Alcatel-Lucent shares up on report it will sell Genesys to Premira for $1.5B

Alcatel-Lucent's (NYSE: ALU) ongoing struggle to sell off non-core assets to get some much-needed cash has rumors emerging once again, with the Financial Times publishing a report that ALU reached a deal to sell its Genesys unit to Premira Advisers for $1.5 billion.   

The stock market greeted the news favorably as the Franco-American company's shares rose almost 11 percent to €2.31 ($3.15) per share.

Previous talks to sell off its entire enterprise services division to Premira fell through in September. At that time, the private equity firm shifted its focus to buy only the call center division. After deciding to open the bidding process up to other candidates, the unit apparently caught the interest of Siemens Enterprise Communications.

Although Alcatel-Lucent and Permira are apparently discussing a deal, a person close to the source said no agreement has been reached yet and it's possible any agreement might not happen. Last month, an apparent deal for the unit was abandoned.

Selling off its enterprise communications assets is key piece of company CEO Ben Verwaayen's broader three-year reinvigoration plan for the company, which has struggled to become profitable since Alcatel bought out Lucent in 2006. A sale of the Genesys unit would enable Alcatel-Lucent to invest more capital into its service provider business.

For more:
- here's the FT article (sub. req.)
- Bloomberg also has this article

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