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Troubled Lucent Loses Another Exec
By Julian Matthews, Newsbytes
08 Dec 2000, 12:38 PM CST

John Hughes, a senior executive of the wireless networks unit of Lucent Technologies Inc, is leaving "to pursue new career opportunities" a Lucent spokesperson confirmed today.

This is the second top manager to quit in two months amid missed earnings, major restructuring and management reshuffling of the beleaguered telecom equipment supplier.

In October, chairman and chief executive officer Richard McGinn was ousted and replaced with interim head Henry Schacht, and in November the company announced it would slash 240 jobs, mostly in corporate operations.

Sam Gronner, a senior manager of external relations for Lucent's wireless networks group, told Newsbytes in an e-mail response that Hughes has elected to leave the company to pursue new career opportunities and his last day is December 12.

He added that Hughes is currently "weighing several options but has chosen not to discuss his future plans."

On his replacement, Gronner replied: "We are taking the opportunity of John's departure to re-engineer the organization and will have an announcement shortly."

Hughes was appointed as GSM/UMTS president in July 1999, and was responsible for growing the company's global wireless business and positioning it to be a major player in third-generation (3G) networks.

He joined Lucent in September 1997 as managing director of the microelectronics group responsible for the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) markets.

Prior to joining Lucent, Hughes was a vice president of the Convex Computer Corporation and director of the Convex division of Hewlett- Packard, after its acquisition in 1995.

Hughes was based in Swindon, United Kingdom and is an electrical and electronic engineering graduate from the University of Hertfordshire, but spent a large part of his early career in the IT industry in the US in various managerial positions.

Lucent, which has made four profit warnings this year, has seen its stock plunge almost 83 percent on the New York Stock Exchange from a 52-week high of US$84.19, to close at US$14.56 a share on Thursday.

The Murray Hill, New Jersey-based company's troubles can be traced back to a decline in the sale of its traditional voice equipment and delays in launching 10-Gbit networking products.

Lucent earlier announced plans to spin-off its semiconductor and optical components business to be called Agere System by first quarter of 2001. In October, it shed its corporate communication systems unit, now known as Avaya Inc.

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12:38 CST




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