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Northern Telecom & Bay Networks
As part of the Bell Canada group of companies, starting with its formation in the 1890's, Northern Telecom Limited grew into a huge multinational telecommunications equipment manufacturer, and until the rise of Research in Motion, was the poster child for technological innovation in Canada.
During an expansion period during the internet boom of the late 1990s, the company acquired Bay Networks for $9.1 billion in 1998, which was formed only four years previous by the merger of two networking companies, Synoptics and Wellfleet. Synoptics was one of the earliest innovators of baseband twisted pair Ethernet products which had heavy penetration into the enterprise networking market, and Wellfleet manufactured enterprise routers and was a heavy competitor to Cisco.
As a result of the merger, the company renamed itself Nortel Networks. In the hopes that the company would make tremendous profits from the the sale of fiber optic network communications equipment, huge speculation of the stock on Wall Street cranked up the price of the company's shares to ridiculous levels, this despite that the company was unable to be profitable, quarter after quarter.
After numerous efforts to restructure the company and financial mismanagement scandals over a period of about ten years, the company filed for Chapter 11 in January of 2009, and its various businesses were eventually liquidated.