News In Brief

In another foray into the lucrative North American market, French telecommunications giant Alcatel said it will buy struggling Newbridge Networks Corp. of Ottawa for $7.1 billion in stock. The move gives Alcatel a broader base from which to compete with US rivals Cisco Systems and Lucent Technologies and with Nortel Networks of Canada - which analysts said Newbridge was too small to do. Newbridge becomes Alcatel's sixth acquisition in the US or Canada since March 1998.

The No. 5 US long-distance telephone company, Global Crossing Ltd., agreed to buy IXnet Inc. and its parent, IPC Communications, in a deal valued between $3.4 billion and $3.8 billion. New York-based IXnet provides high-speed phone and data connections for 600 financial-services firms. Its acquisition is expected to help Global Crossing, which is based in Hamilton, Bermuda, reach directly such companies as Citigroup Inc. and Goldman Sachs.

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