ITWorld Canada’s Nortel timeline

1998 – Nortel was news topper in 1998 – for a good reason

Without question, this was the networking deal of 1998. When Nortel bought Bay for a whopping US$9.1 billion, it unleashed a trend amongst vendors to converge traditional data networking with voice and video networks.

1999-John Roth moves up

Exactly one year to the day that Nortel Networks Corp. bought Bay Networks Inc., the company announced that Dave House will leave his post as Nortel president by the end of August.House will remain on Nortel’s board of directors, while John Roth, vice-chairman and CEO, will take over House’s operational and management duties.

Nov 1999- Nortel deals with labour shortage

Nortel Networks decided in 1989 that it needed to quadruple its sales figures, but the task force created to achieve that goal realized there were simply not enough available IT workers in Canada to drive that growth. So it decided to look across the water.

Feb 2000 – Doubts on finances are raised

A familiar pattern emerges. Only two months ago, Nortel was being seriously second guessed by a financial investment community in doubt over Nortel Networks’ US$3.25 billion blockbuster purchase of Qtera, a start up developer of technology (but no real product) for long-reach optical network systems.

Then in late January, Nortel proudly announced strong financials for the past year, and the skepticism of misunderstanding about the company’s direction and strategy seems to have lifted.

Feb 2000 – BCE, Nortel separation

BCE Inc. intends to distribute its approximate 37 per cent interest in Nortel Networks to BCE’s nearly 500,000 shareholders in what analysts are calling a windfall.

Oct – 2000 Nortel’s Q3 profit, excluding charges, soars 63 per cent

May 2001 – Nortel focuses on Ethernet over optical fibre

Jun 2001 – Roth replacement search begins for Nortel

News that Nortel Networks Corp. CEO John Roth will retire in 11 months casts more uncertainty over the beleaguered telecom giant.

Oct 2001 – Nortel announces layoff of 10,000 workers

Feb 2001 – Cutbacks signal slowdown

April 2002 – Moody’s donwgrades Nortel bond rating

May 2002 – More cuts at Nortel

Dec 2002 – Nortel names enterprise chief

Malcolm Collins, formerly Nortel’s senior executive for the U.K. and Northern European Region, has been appointed president of Enterprise Networks, effective immediately. =

Dan McLean: Total failure unlikely for Nortel, though fate is still up in the air Speculating about the future of Canadian institution Nortel Networks is becoming something of a national pastime.

Feb 2003 – Nortel sued over $100 million 360networks payments

Jun 2003 – Nortel outlines ‘VPN-ablement’ for carriers

Aug 2003 – RCMP initiates Nortel investigation

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) launched a criminal investigation into the financial accounting practices of network gear maker Nortel Networks Corp. just days before the company is set to release some of its restated financial results.

Oct 2003 – Nortel bullish on mobility

Nortel Networks Corp. is fast-tracking a range of Wi-Max products to make the most of what it believes will be a short-lived market in fixed Wi-Max communication. a

April 2004 – Nortel fires executives, postpones results

Nortel Networks Corp. announced on Wednesday that it has fired CEO Frank Dunn “for cause” and has replaced him with William Owens, former CEO of satellite communications company Teledesic LLC. Nortel has also delayed the availability of its financial results for the first quarter of 2004.

June 2005 – Nortel president resigns after falling out with CEO

Gary Daichendt resigned as president and chief operating officer of Nortel Networks Corp. on Friday, after falling out with Chief Executive Officer Bill Owens.

IBM, Nortel team up

Oct 2005 – Zafirovski takes the helm

Feb 2006- Nortel to settle $2.5 billion class action suit

Jun 2006- Nortel to slash 1,900 jobs, create 800 in revamp

Jan 2007 – Nortel and Microsoft unveil joint unified messaging roadmap

Feb 2007 – Verizon, Nortel strike a deal

Nortel Networks Corp.’s recent US$2 billion contract to supply equipment and services to telecom firm Verizon Wireless is a huge shot in the arm for Nortel — as well as Canadian telecommunications, according to one industry insider.

Nortel to slash 2,900 jobs

Mar 2007 – Four Nortel execs charged with dishonest accounting practices

Mar 2008- Nortel, Microsoft, launch four joint UC products

Nortel Networks and Microsoft on Tuesday extended their two-year-old partnership with the launch of four unified communications products.

Jun 2008- RCMP charges former Nortel head Frank Dunn

Former Nortel chief exec, along with two senior bean counters, have been charged by the RCMP with making false entries in the company’s financial statements and deceiving shareholders. All three had been fired in 2003.

Jul 2008- Nortel to provide networks for London Olympics

Nov 2008- Massive Nortel layoff looms anew

Anywhere from 3,000 to 5,000 jobs could be slashed by the network gear provider this week, according to analyst estimates

Dec 2008- Nortel contemplates bankruptcy, says report

The former Canadian IT jewel has hired lawyers to study the possibility of seeking bankruptcy protection, according to a U.S. newspaper. A Canadian analyst says customers shouldn’t panic yet

The culture at Nortel

During its supposed heyday in 2000, Nortel usually would not talk to the trade press.

Don’t write off Nortel yet

(Compiled by Nestor Arellano)

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