AT&T Co has found a French partner to bolster the claims of its AT&T-Philips Telecommunications venture for management control of Compagnie Generale des Constructions Telephoniques, CGCT, in the shape of SAT, Societe Anonyme de Telecommunications. SAT, which employs 5,300 people and does some $650m manufacturing telecommunications transmission equipment, will today announce that it is joining forces with AT&T in the bidding for CGCT, according to the Financial Times. Final bids for CGCT are due in today, but the protracted affair, which first came to prominence before the election last spring, is expected to drag on for another month before an announcement is made. The latest betting is shading in favour of the AT&T-Philips bid, particularly with the addition of SAT, but Siemens, now in partnership with Jeumont-Schneider, and Ericsson, expected to bring in Matra on its bid, both have strong claims to be allowed to take control of the state-owned company, and its captive 16% share of the French public switching market.
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