Connectivity Briefs: Avaya, Extreme Networks, PowerTel

Connectivity Briefs: Avaya, Extreme Networks, PowerTel

Avaya to lay off 2,500

Avaya has announced it plans to cut nearly 2,500 jobs and take a $US150 million charge in its fourth quarter, as the company continues a restructuring effort. Avaya had previously said that it planned to take a charge of between $150 million and $250 million for the fourth quarter. In a statement, the voice and data network provider updated this figure to say the charges will fall on the low end of this range and 2,500 positions will be reduced. Other costs in the restructuring stem from real estate cutbacks and IT-related expenses.

Extreme switch management

Extreme Networks has launched a version of its network management software that promises more automation of repetitive management tasks, a more intuitive user interface, and support for larger networks. Epicenter 4.0 from Extreme could help network managers with bulk-configuration tools to configure large numbers of Extreme hardware products, such as the BlackDiamond, Alpine and Summit lines of Ethernet and Gigabit Ethernet LAN boxes. The new Epicenter can also support more devices than previous versions, and includes an improved user interface, the company said. Epicenter 4.0 is available now for $US7,000.

PowerTel calms shareholders

ASX-listed wholesale network provider PowerTel has advised its anxious shareholders that its major backer, Williams Communications, has found a way to climb out of financial difficulties. Williams Communications, which owns 45 per cent of the Australian company, announced it would go into Chapter 11 debt restructuring in late April. Williams has now reached an agreement with Leucadia National Corporation, which will commit $US150 million to the beleaguered group and take a 45 per cent stake in Williams. Local executives said PowerTel was not adversely affected by Williams' debt problems and will post positive results for the first half of 2002.

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