Alcatel-Lucent sees better days ahead after reporting poor second quarter

ALCATEL-Lucent expects to burn less cash and improve margins in the second half after reporting deeper quarterly losses, hit by telecoms operators&rsquo; cuts in capital spending, the group said yesterday.<br /><br />The French-American telecoms equipment group also said it was monitoring the market to issue convertible bonds but pledged to steer clear of any deal too dilutive for shareholders. The world&rsquo;s biggest provider of fixed telecoms equipment said it saw 2009 as another transition year -- its third since its merger -- and aimed to be &ldquo;moderately&rdquo; profitable in 2010.<br /><br />When Alcatel of France merged with US-based Lucent in December 2006, the group took a long time to harmonise its product portfolio.<br /><br />This prompted operators to delay their investments until they knew which technology the group would support or they chose to do business with some of its rivals.<br /><br />In 2008 and this year the fragile newly-formed group was hit hard by the global slowdown in telecoms gear spending. It has achieved 35 per cent of its cost savings targets for the year.