Swedish wireless equipment maker LM Ericsson on Saturday said it had penned a deal to buy a majority of Nortel Networks ' North American wireless business for $1.13 billion.
The Stockholm-based group said the purchase is on a cash and debt-free basis and covers the older CDMA and newer LTE wireless businesses of Nortel's Carrier Networks unit, The Associated Press reports.
According to Wall Street Journal, at least three bidders vying for the most profitable piece of the bankrupt Nortel Networks Corp. were locked in conference rooms Friday at a New York law firm seeking to win the unit of the Toronto company that supplies telecom equipment to major U.S. carriers.
The auction stretched into the evening, according to a person familiar with the matter, with the third round of bidding for the profitable but declining CDMA business, which had been Nortel's cash engine.
The two largest makers of wireless network gear by sales, Telefon AB L.M. Ericsson and Nokia Siemens Networks, are seeking the CDMA unit plus a group of 400 researchers working on a high-end broadband technology.
Nortel will seek Canadian and U.S. court approvals of the proposed sale agreement at a joint hearing on July 28, 2009, the financially troubled company said in a statement.
The head of Ericsson expressed satisfaction with the result, saying it brings "together leading-edge wireless innovation" from two top telecommunications suppliers.
"We at Ericsson look forward to integrating Nortel's products and talented employees into our business and realizing the full potential of our combined strengths," Ericsson CEO Carl-Henric Svanberg said in a statement, informs The Canadian Press.
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