TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: Long-Term AT&T Investors

Re: Long-Term AT&T Investors
Wed, 8 Mar 2006 20:14:39 EST

In a message dated Tue, 07 Mar 2006 09:57:34 -0700, Anthony Bellanga
<> writes:

> Also, AT&T used to own a part of Bell Canada, which is now part of
> Bell Canada Enterprises. I don't know if Nortel is now an entity
> totally separate from Bell Canada (in the way that Lucent is now
> separate from AT&T), but Nortel was once Northern Electric, and also a
> "part" of the "Bell System" in a way. Both Bell Canada (partially
> owned by AT&T) and Western Electric (totally owned by AT&T) were part
> owned Northern Electric back then.

AT&T steadily reduced it's investment in the Bell Telephone Company of
Canada, was it was legally know then, to about 4 per cent. It was my
understanding that Northern Electric was wholly owned by Bell Canada.

Both the Bell Telephone Company of Canada and its subsidiary, Northern
Electric, were parties to the "license agreement," a contract with the
American Telephone and Telegraph Company which allowed them use use
all of AT&T's patents and trademarks. This was the document that made
a company a part of the Bell System.

Northern Electric built all kinds of equipment to the same Bell Labs
designs as adopted by Western Electric. When a southeast Tulsa growth
area needed serious relief more quickly than W.E. could provide it,
they acquired an entire 5XB office from Northern Electric which became
the newly-built NAtional office in Tulsa. The Bell chief engineer for
Oklahoma was, of course, much interested in what would be different,
but the only thing he could find different was that the paint on
equipment housings and the like was beige rather than the rather dingy
blue that W.E. used..

> Southern New England Telephone Company (for most of Connecticut) was
> only partially owned by AT&T, and became a separate entity altogather
> with 1984. But in 1997, SBC (which had just taken over Pacific
> Telesis' Pacific Bell and Nevada Bell) took over SNET. And now, SBC
> has been renamed "at&t" with their purchase of AT&T.

> But I think that Cincinnati Bell is still a separate entity
> altogather. Prior to 1984, AT&T only partially held Cincinnati Bell,
> but with 1984, it became a totally separate company of its own. But it
> was still a "part" of the old Bell System, to some degree.

Both Cincinnati Bell (formerly the Cincinnati and Suburban Bell
Telephone Company) and the Southern New England Telephone Company were
particpants in the "license agreement," so they were part of the Bell
System although AT&T had only a minority interest in those two

In a message dated 7 Mar 2006 14:28:40 -0800,

> Although the question is of historical interest only at this point
> because the company no longer exists, even if the name is continuing.

It is not all that uncommon in the business world for the acquirer to
take the name of the acquired company. Phil Anshutz's (he of Qwest
fame, among many other businesses) Denger and Rio Grande Western
Railroad acquired that Southern Pacific Company, parent of the
Southern Pacific Railroad (which had long since divested Sprint).
Then he changed the name of the company to Southern Pacific. (Also of
historic interest only, since the Union Pacific Railroad acquired
Southern Pacific and dropped the name).

NationsBank, formerly NCNB National Bank, and before that North
Carolina National Bank, acquired Bank of America and then changed its
name to Bank of America.

Wes Leatherock

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