Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Ciena Bids to Acquire Nortel's Metro Ethernet for $521 Million

Ciena agreed to acquire all of the optical networking and carrier Ethernet assets of Nortel's Metro Ethernet Networks (MEN) business for $390 million in cash and 10 million shares of Ciena common stock. Based on the closing price of Ciena's stock on Tuesday, October 6, 2009, the full deal is valued at $521 million. The deal is subject to a competitive bidding process and higher offers could emerge. It also requires the approval of the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware and the Ontario Superior Court of Justice.

The deal includes Nortel's long-haul optical transport portfolio; metro optical Ethernet switching and transport solutions; Ethernet transport, aggregation and switching technology; multiservice SONET/SDH product families; and network management software products.

Ciena is expected to make employment offers to at least 2,000 Nortel employees. In addition, The proposed acquisition would significantly enhance Ciena's existing Canadian-based development resources, making Ottawa the company's largest product and development center. Ciena currently has development facilities in Alpharetta, Georgia; Linthicum, Maryland; Ottawa, Ontario; San Jose, California; Spokane, Washington; and Gurgaon, India. As of July 31, 2009, the end of its fiscal third quarter, Ciena employed 2,110 employees globally.

"This is a unique and exciting opportunity for us to accelerate our existing strategy and the pace of our growth plans by two to three years," said Gary Smith, Ciena's CEO and president. "We believe this transaction will position us for faster growth by giving us greater geographic reach, broader customer relationships and a deeper portfolio of solutions. We believe we are best positioned to leverage these assets, thereby creating a significant challenger to traditional network vendors."http://www.ciena.com