Alcatel-Lucent Considers Former Exec Mike Quigley For CEO Post - InformationWeek

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Alcatel-Lucent Considers Former Exec Mike Quigley For CEO Post

The company has been looking for a new chief executive ever since chief executive Patricia Russo and chairman Serge Tchuruk resigned their posts last month.

Mike Quigley, who joined Alcatel back in 1971 and worked his way up to become chief operating officer, has resurfaced as a leading candidate for Alcatel-Lucent's top executive post, according to new reports making the rounds in Paris and New York.

The company has been looking for a new chief executive ever since chief executive Patricia Russo and chairman Serge Tchuruk resigned their posts last month to make way for new management. Alcatel-Lucent has been shuffling its management teams around since the two firms merged and the combined firm's stock has plunged by two-thirds since the merger

Quigley left the combined company last August amid reports that he was headed back to his native Australia where he began his Alcatel career in 1971. He worked his way up Alcatel's management ladder becoming chief of the firm's Australia-New Zealand business until finally taking over as COO of Alcatel's U.S. operation in 1999 and then onto the COO post of Alcatel.

In recent months Alcatel-Lucent has been racked by dismal financial reports, massive layoffs and management bickering. The Wall Street Journal cited reports Thursday of "bickering between Mr. Tchuruk and Ms. Russo and culture clashes among employees."

The newspaper also said there were other candidates for the top post including Thierry Breton, former chairman of France Telecom SA; Philippe Germond, CEO of Atos Origin SA; and Stephen Burke, chief operating officer of Comcast. Outside Alcatel-Lucent director Daniel Bernard is reported to be leading the search team.

France's Alcatel merged with Lucent Technologies, which was carved out of the old AT&T Western Electric unit.

Even in the face of management and financial tumult at the merged company, Russo put on a brave face as she exited the company last month. "Our strategy is taking hold, and our results are demonstrating good operational progress," she said, adding: "That said, I believe it is the right time for me to step down." Also leaving the company last month was longtime director Henry Schacht, who previously had been CEO at Lucent.

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