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Nortel closes crippling Alteon sale

Alex Scroxton
Nortel and Radware have finalised the terms of their stalking horse deal by which the Israel-based security expert picked up Nortel's layer 4-7 application delivery switch business, Alteon, for the discount price of $18m.
 
As revealed by MicroScope in February, Radware has picked up an absolute bargain with the fire sale of the Alteon unit which Nortel bought in 2000 for $7.8bn, so even adjusting for inflation the vendor has still lost billions of dollars on the sale.
 
Included in the acquisition are Alteon's application delivery gear, its tangible and IP assets, inventory and service contracts and an undisclosed number of Nortel employees.
 
Radware has initiated a five-year product support plan for existing customers and has also committed itself to further develop the Alteon product line. Talk that Nortel would remain involved as an OEM partner were not confirmed.
 
For resellers the deal will also take alleviate some of the uncertainty that surrounds doing business with Nortel. Many UK channel partners have pledged to stand by the troubled vendor, but have felt the pinch in recent weeks as rivals move in on its patch.
 
Stuart Brown, product manager at Maxima, said "[This] is a good sign. [Radware's] assurance to evolve the product line and provide immediate, knowledgeable technical support gives us confidence that our customers will be well served."
 
Speculation continues to grow that Nortel is on the verge of hiving off some of its other units; this week rumours - first circulated last month - that Avaya and Siemens Enterprise Communications were holding talks with Nortel over the future of its enterprise business, resurfaced.

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