Nokia has agreed to buy its French rival Alcatel-Lucent in a deal worth €15.6 billion.
Alcatel-Lucent would own 33.5% of the combined company, while Nokia shareholders would own 66.5%. The combined company will be called Nokia Corporation, with headquarters in Finland and a strong presence in France. Risto Siilasmaa is planned to serve as Chairman, and Rajeev Suri as Chief Executive Officer.
The agreement, 24-hours after the two firms confirmed they were in takeover talks, follows the backing of the French government. Its approval came with the condition that there would be no job cuts in France. Nevertheless, there will still be €900 million in operational savings made by 2019.
“Our innovation capability will be extraordinary, bringing together the R&D engine of Nokia with that of Alcatel-Lucent and its iconic Bell Labs. We will continue to combine this strength with the highly efficient, lean operations needed to compete on a global scale,” said Rajeev Suri, President and Chief Executive Officer of Nokia. “Together, we expect to have the scale to lead in every area in which we choose to compete, drive profitable growth, meet the needs of global customers, develop new technologies, build on our successful intellectual property licensing, and create value for our shareholders”.
Michel Combes, Chief Executive Officer of Alcatel-Lucent, added: “A combination of Nokia and Alcatel-Lucent will offer a unique opportunity to create a European champion and global leader in ultra-broadband, IP networking and cloud applications. I am proud that the joined forces of Nokia and Alcatel-Lucent are ready to accelerate our strategic vision, giving us the financial strength and critical scale needed to achieve our transformation and invest in and develop the next generation of network technology”
The combined company will have a market share of 35%, second only to Ericsson.
The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2016.