Users who bought Newbridge Networks equipment from the company's partner, Siemens, have been assured that they will not be left stranded following Alcatel's acquisition of Newbridge.
Siemens sells about 10 per cent of Newbridge's equipment and there had been some concern following this week's merger that Alcatel - a fierce rival of Siemens - would sever the alliance, leaving users' support contracts in jeopardy.
But Siemens said today at Cebit that Alcatel chief executive Serge Tchuruk had assured the German company that the four-year old relationship would remain intact.
Volker Jung, a member of Siemens' managing board, said: "Tchuruk wants to continue the co-operation between Newbridge and Siemens. In today's world, a company is a partner in one world, a customer in another, and a competitor in another."
Newbridge and Siemens formed their alliance in 1996 with the initial intention of jointly developing and selling asynchronous transfer mode (ATM) technology. They have extended the deal to other areas, including IP virtual private networking, and boast customers such as Global One and Deutsche Telekom.
Newbridge's ATM technology is one of the key components that Alcatel wanted from its $7.1bn (£4.4bn) purchase - a price tag described by one Siemens executive as "surprising".
Siemens claims it can match the components that Newbridge will give Alcatel - radio networking, routers and ATM. Jung said Siemens would not be looking for another partner to tackle the combined force of Alcatel and Newbridge.
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