Alcatel-Lucent board pledges support for Russo

Alcatel-Lucent's board voiced support for CEO Patricia Russo but disappointment in the company's financial forecast.

The board of Alcatel-Lucent voiced support for the company's embattled CEO, Patricia Russo, while acknowledging it is "clearly disappointed" with declines in Alcatel's financial outlook.

Last month, Alcatel-Lucent said its revenue would be flat or up just slightly this year, after it had previously forecast growth in the mid-single digits. As a result, the company said, it would only break even this quarter.

Alcatel and Lucent carried out a controversial trans-Atlantic merger last year as both telecommunications infrastructure vendors struggled with a consolidating carrier market and growing low-cost competition from Asian manufacturers. Russo, who had been CEO of Lucent since 2002, moved to Paris to run the new company amid a merger process that brings together different national cultures and even employment laws.

Former Alcatel chief Serge Tchuruk was named non-executive chairman. Alcatel-Lucent cut 3,800 jobs in the first half of this year, and Russo said last month the company would speed up its restructuring and carry out more cost-cutting plans.

The company's American Depositary Receipts on the New York Stock Exchange (ALA), which were around US$15 earlier this year, now hover around US$10. After the board's statement Tuesday, they were up US$0.21 at US$10.33.

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