Avaya reportedly in talks over sale

Telecommunications equipment maker Avaya is reportedly in talks over a complete or partial sale of its business.

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By  Michele Howe Published  May 29, 2007

Telecommunications equipment maker Avaya is reportedly in talks over a complete or partial sale of its business. Citing executives briefed on the negotiations, the New York Times said the firm is in talks to sell a part or all of itself and has retained investment firm Credit Suisse as an adviser. Cisco and Nortel are two of the firms interested in Avaya as well as private equity firm Silver Lake Partners, according to the report. Avaya has still not confirmed it is in negotiations, however. Contacted by ITP.net, Nidal Abou-Ltaif, managing director Middle East and North Africa for Avaya, said the company is refusing to comment on “speculation and rumours”. Rumours surfaced last week that the company was being eyed for a takeover when it cancelled a pre-arranged meeting with analysts. Investment firm Merrill Lynch also identified the firm as a perfect candidate for a takeover following the recent purchase of US wireless provider Alltel for US$27.5 billion by TPG Capital and GS Capital Partners. Created in 2000 as a spin-off from Lucent Technologies, Avaya is a key competitor of Cisco in the internet protocol (IP) telephony market. Telecom analyst, Marc Hammoud of Dubai-based investment bank Shuaa Capital, said this week that such a deal would not be a surprise, as telco operators are increasingly focused on next generation networks, making Avaya the “perfect target”.

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