Lucent wins battle to buy Riverstone

Lucent Technologies has won the battle to take over bankrupt Riverstone Networks, after beating off a late bid by rival infrastructure provider Ericsson.

Lucent Technologies has won the battle to take over bankrupt Riverstone Networks, after beating off a late bid by rival infrastructure provider Ericsson.

Last month, Lucent made the first move to buy the assets of Riverstone for $170m (£100m), an offer Riverstone had accepted. But Ericsson made a late bid of $178m for Riverstone.

Lucent won out earlier this week though, with a final bid of $207m. The Riverstone assets will bolster Lucent’s network equipment portfolio.

Riverstone is a specialist in Ethernet hardware that can be used in carrier networks. This is a growing market area as service providers increasingly opt for Ethernet-based systems, which are seen as more flexible than traditional carrier network solutions.

Ericsson was on the expansion path after recently acquiring the majority of Marconi’s network hardware assets.

Before trying to buy Riverstone, Ericsson was rumoured to be interested in buying Juniper Networks, the world’s number two router supplier behind Cisco.

After failing in its relatively cut-price attempt to buy Riverstone, it may now return to the much more expensive option of buying Juniper. 

Lucent’s Riverstone buy has to be approved by a US bankruptcy court. The two sides expect the deal to go through next month.

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