Ericsson Takes Over Nortel's Stake in LG Joint Venture


Ericsson has completed the takeover of Nortel Networks’ majority shareholder stake in the LG-Nortel joint venture.

Gear-maker Ericsson now has greater reach in Korea, one of the world’s largest markets with advanced end-user demand for new services, Ericsson said.

LG and Nortel started their joint venture in 2005 to develop 4G products and systems for telecom service providers. But the partnership soured after Nortel declared bankruptcy in January 2009 and needed money to repay creditors. Ericsson paid $242 million in cash and, in addition to the LG-Nortel assets, gets contracts with operators including KT, LG Telecom and SK Telecom.

Ericsson announced on April 21 it would buy Nortel’s 50-percent-plus-one-share stake in the LG-Nortel venture. In 2009, the unit reported about $650 million in sales and had 1,300 employees. Ericsson didn’t say whether it will keep those workers but it will change the venture’s name to LG-Ericsson.

LG-Ericsson will remain headquartered in Seoul. Ericsson expects the deal to boost profits within a year after closing.

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