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Lucent sells majority stake in new ventures unit

Posted: 08 Jan 2002 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:lucent technologies? coller capital? wireless? basestation amplifiers? celiant?

Lucent Technologies has sold 80 percent of its New Ventures Group of companies to Coller Capital, a London-based equity management company.

Lucent Technologies (Murray Hill, N.J.) said Thursday (Jan. 3) it will retain a 20 percent stake in the group and will form a new venture partnership Coller Capital, called New Venture Partners II LP, to own and manage the portfolio.

Operating as an independent venture, the group will be able to incubate ideas from other companies beyond Lucent's Bell Labs.

Lucent had formed the New Ventures Group in 1997 to take technologies from Bell Labs that didn't fit with Lucent's corporate strategy and grow them into independent companies. The group attracted $350 million from venture capitalists to fund 34 ventures built on Bell Labs technologies. These include Celiant Corp., a developer of wireless basestation amplifiers, which was spun out in October.

Tom Uhlman, former president of Lucent's New Ventures Group, will become a managing partner of New Venture Partners and will oversee the portfolio; he will have no executive role at Lucent.

Uhlman said the sale of the New Ventures Group to Coller Capital will bring capital and an international perspective to the group. In addition, the new structure will allow the group to form partnerships with Bell Labs and with other companies, many of whom had contacted the group while it was still part of Lucent, he said.

Lucent reportedly sold a majority stake in the New Ventures unit to raise capital and focus on key businesses. The company did not reveal details of the transaction.

Margaret Quan

EE Times

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