Nortel rearranges chairs

In addition to last week's bloodbath and the replacement of John Roth with Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Frank Dunn as chief executive officer (CEO), Nortel Networks Corp. announced the following senior management appointments and changes.

After warning of a US$3.6 billion loss for the upcoming quarter and axing another 15,000 to 20,000 jobs, pinning medals on a select few seems a little gratuitous at this time. But Mr. Dunn will need all the help he can get to right the Nortel ship.

The new management structure, which will execute Nortel's business plan in what is now only three target markets - Optical Long Haul Networks, Wireless Networks and Metro Networks - begins Nov. 1, Dunn's first official day as Nortel president and CEO.

Nortel's new senior management team is:

Terry Hungle, CFO, formerly president of Finance for Nortel Networks Americas.

Frank Plastina, president, Metro Networks. Formerly president of Service Provider and Corporate Networks, Plastina will be responsible for Nortel's Intelligent Internet, Enterprise Networks, Circuit-to-Packet, Metro Optical, circuit switching and Global Networks Support operations.

Greg Mumford, president, Optical Long Haul Networks, formerly president of Optical Internet.

Pascal Debon, president, Wireless Networks, replacing Jules Meunier, who has left Nortel. Debon was formerly president of Nortel's Europe, Middle East & Africa operations.

Rounding out the team are Chahram Bolouri, who will continue as president of Global Operations; Gary Donahee, who will continue as president, Americas; former President North America region Stephen Pusey, who now replaces Debon as president, EMEA; Asia-Pacific President Masood Tariq; and Kannankote Srikanth, who will continue as president, Global Professional Services.

Chief Marketing Officer Alan Kember will also report directly to Dunn. Kember replaced Anil Khatod who left abruptly earlier this year.

Conspicuously absent from Nortel's three target market areas - which last quarter numbered five - are the letters "IP" and the word "Internet." Nortel has been playing the "Internet" card ever since acquiring Bay Networks in June 1998, pasting the word to each of its product and market areas: Optical Internet, Wireless Internet, Local Internet, Personal Internet… Now, "Internet" is but a subset of Nortel's Metro Networks business. The Internet a subset of metro… and here I thought the Internet had global reach extending far beyond the boundaries of a metro area.

"IP" made up two of Nortel's five target growth areas last quarter: IP networking and IP services solutions. Now none.

Maybe Nortel is just finding out what everyone else has known for awhile.

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