Ericsson came from behind to win the Nortel wireless auction, beating out both NSN (the original straw-man bidder) and a private equity bidder for the deal. There’s still a step of court and regulatory approval, but we’re not hearing issues in either of the two areas so far.
The Nortel deal gives Ericsson another North American asset after its win of a management contract for Sprint. It also means a major disappointment for NSN, which really needed to boost its own position in the U.S. in particular.
Obviously everybody knows at this point that wireless capex will beat wireline for the foreseeable future, but we also think that the move is linked to an overall change in provider procurement policies worldwide, a shift to a partnership with a few key vendors that control significant opportunity ecosystems.
Other deals like this are likely to emerge, inside and outside the wireless space, as vendors mass up and position for the fall cycle. We cover this shift in depth in the July issue of Netwatcher.