Nokia nears closing of Alcatel-Lucent acquisition, holds nearly 80% of Alcatel-Lucent shares

Nokia reports the Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF), the French stock market authority, has published interim results of the initial offer period of Nokia's public exchange offer for Alcatel-Lucent securities in France and in the United States. The results indicate Nokia now holds almost 80% of Alcatel-Lucent's shares, after announcing its intention to acquire the France-based systems house last April (see "Nokia pulls trigger on Alcatel-Lucent buy").

Nokia reports the Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF), the French stock market authority, has published interim results of the initial offer period of Nokia's public exchange offer for Alcatel-Lucent securities in France and in the United States. The results indicate Nokia now holds almost 80% of Alcatel-Lucent's shares, after announcing its intention to acquire the France-based systems house last April (see "Nokia pulls trigger on Alcatel-Lucent buy").

If the AMF confirms these interim results as expected January 5 and assuming the full exercise of convertible bonds and settlement of the offer January 7, Nokia will hold 79.32% of the share capital and at least 78.97% of the voting rights of Alcatel-Lucent. This result would enable Nokia to begin integration of Alcatel-Lucent, with the first day of joint operation targeted for January 14, 2016.

Meanwhile, in accordance with French law, Nokia will reopen the tender process in France and the U.S. in hopes of buying the rest of the outstanding shares. The reopened tender will begin within 10 French trading days of the final AMF report. If it attains 95% share ownership, Nokia says it intends to squeeze out the remaining shareholders.

"We are delighted that the offer has been successful, and that Alcatel-Lucent's investors share our confidence in the future of the combined company," said Rajeev Suri, Nokia's president and CEO. "We will move quickly to combine the two companies and execute our integration plans. As of January 14, 2016, Nokia and Alcatel-Lucent will offer a combined end-to-end portfolio of the scope and scale to meet the needs of our global customers. We will have unparalleled R&D and innovation capabilities, which we will use to lead the world in creating next-generation technology and services."

Nokia reiterated its intention, subject to Nokia shareholder approval, to execute a EUR 7 billion program to optimize its capital structure and return excess capital to Nokia shareholders once the transaction closes. The move is planned to include approximately EUR 4 billion in distributions to Nokia shareholders; remaining holders of Alcatel-Lucent securities will not receive distributions.

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