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Alcatel-Lucent (French pronunciation: ?[alkat?l lys?nt]) is a French global telecommunications equipment company, headquartered in Boulogne-Billancourt, France. The company focuses on fixed, mobile, and converged networking hardware, IP technologies, software, and services. Alcatel-Lucent has operations in more than 130 countries. Alcatel-Lucent has been named Industry Group Leader for Technology Hardware & Equipment sector in the 2014 Dow Jones Sustainability Indices review[2] and listed in the 2014 Thomson Reuters Top 100 Global Innovators for the 4th year in a row.[3]

Alcatel-Lucent's chief executive officer is Michel Combes and the non-executive chairman of the board is Philippe Camus. Camus joined the company in the third quarter of 2008, alongside Ben Verwaayen as CEO, after Alcatel-Lucent's first CEO Patricia Russo and first chairman Serge Tchuruk resigned.[4] For 2010, the company posted revenues of €15.996 billion and a reported net loss of €334 million.[5] For 2011, the company posted revenues of €15.068 billion and a reported profit of €1.095 billion. For 2012, the company posted revenues of €14.446 billion and a reported loss of €1.374 billion.[6] After seven consecutive years of negative cash flows, in October 2013 the company announced plans to slash 10,000 employees, or 14% of the total current 72,000 workforce, as a part of a €1 billion cost reduction effort.[7]

In June 2013, Michel Combes announced ? The Shift Plan ?,[8] a three-year plan including portfolio refocusing on IP networking, ultra-broadband access and cloud; Euro 1 billion in cost savings; selective asset sales intended to generate at least Euro 1 billion over the period of the plan and the reprofiling the Group¡¯s debt. On October 1, 2014, Alcatel-Lucent announced that it had closed the sale of its subsidiary Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise to China Huaxin Post & Telecommunication Economy Development Center.

Alcatel-Lucent holds Bell Laboratories, one of the largest research and development facilities in the communications industry. Bell Labs employees have been awarded eight Nobel Prizes and the company holds over 29,000 patents.

Alcatel-Lucent was formed when Alcatel (originally short for the Soci¨¦t¨¦ Alsacienne de Constructions Atomiques, de T¨¦l¨¦communications et d'Electronique, a small company in Mulhouse absorbed by CGE in 1966) merged with Lucent Technologies on December 1, 2006. However, the predecessors of the company have been a part of telecommunications industry since the late 19th century. The company has roots in two early telecommunications companies: La Compagnie G¨¦n¨¦rale d'Electricit¨¦ (CGE) and the Western Electric Manufacturing Company.[9]

Western Electric began in 1869 when Elisha Gray and Enos N. Barton started a small manufacturing firm based in Cleveland, Ohio. By 1880, the company had relocated to Chicago, Illinois, and become the largest electrical manufacturing company in the United States. In 1881 the American Bell Telephone Company, founded by Alexander Graham Bell and forerunner of American Telephone & Telegraph (AT&T), purchased a controlling interest in Western Electric and made it the exclusive developer and manufacturer of equipment for the Bell telephone companies.[9]

CGE was formed in 1898 by French engineer Pierre Azaria in the Alsace region of what was then Germany and was a conglomerate involved in industries such as electricity, transportation, electronics and telecommunications. CGE would become a leader in digital communications and would also be known for producing the TGV (train ¨¤ grande vitesse) high-speed trains in France.[9]


Alcatel One Touch 535, front side. (introduced July 2003)
Bell Telephone Laboratories was created in 1925 from the consolidation of the R&D organizations of Western Electric and AT&T. Bell Labs would make significant scientific advances including: the transistor, the laser, the solar cell battery, the digital signal processor chip, the Unix operating system and the cellular concept of mobile telephone service. Bell Labs researchers have won 7 Nobel Prizes.[9]

Also in 1925, Western Electric sold its International Western Electric Company subsidiary to ITT Corporation. CGE purchased the telecommunications part of ITT in the mid-1980s.[9]

AT&T re-entered the European telecommunications market in 1984 following the Bell System divestiture. Philips promoted the venture in part because its PRX public switching technology was ageing and it sought a partner to help fund the development costs of digital switching. The joint company used the existing manufacturing and development facilities in The Hague, Hilversum, Brussels, and Malmesbury as well as its U.S. resources to adapt the 5ESS system to the European market. The joint venture company AT&T & Philips Telecommunications BV doubled annual turnover between 1984 and 1987, winning major switching and transmission contracts, mainly in the effectively captive Netherlands market. In 1987 AT&T increased its holding to 60% and in 1990 it purchased the remainder of the Philips' holding.

In 1998 Alcatel Alsthom shifted its focus to the telecommunications industry, spinning off its Alsthom activities and changing the company's name to Alcatel. AT&T spun off Lucent Technologies in April 1996 with an initial public offering.[9]

World areas which Alcatel-Lucent serve.
In April 2004, TCL Corporation and Alcatel announced the creation of a mobile phone manufacturing joint venture: Alcatel Mobile Phones.

Alcatel-Lucent campus in Germany.
Facing intense competition in the telecommunications industry, Alcatel and Lucent Technologies merged on November 30, 2006.[10]

On April 5, 2006, Alcatel announced that it would swap its shares of Alcatel Alenia Space and Telespazio for €673 million and a 12.1% stake in Thales, a key player in the French defense industry. This increased Alcatel's stake in Thales to 20.8%.[9]

Alcatel-Lucent acquired Nortel's UMTS radio access business at the end of 2006. During 2007 the company acquired Canadian metro WDM networking supplier Tropic Networks, Inc.; enterprise services gateway products developer NetDevices; IPTV software company Tamblin; and the telecommunications consulting practice Thompson Advisory Group, Inc. Alcatel-Lucent acquired Motive, Inc., a provider of service management software for broadband and mobile data services in 2008.[9] They formerly had a joint venture with Dutch company Draka Holding N.V. for manufacturing optical fibre, but Draka bought out Alcatel-Lucent's 49.9% stake for €209 million in December 2007.[11]

In May 2009 Alcatel-Lucent's stake in Thales was acquired by Dassault Aviation.[12] Alcatel-Lucent announced the acquisition of OpenPlug on September 1, 2010.[13]

In October 2011, Alcatel-Lucent sold its call-center services business Genesys unit to Permira, a private equity group, for $1.5 billion¡ªthe same amount the company bought the business for in 2000. Alcatel-Lucent needed funding for the Franco-American business, which made annual losses from 2007 to 2011.[14]