Pieces of AT&T: Avaya Goes Private

| About: Aviva plc (AV)

Eddy Elfenbein submits: Another stock is leaving the public market. This time, it’s Avaya (NYSE:AV), which is one of the spin-offs of the spin-offs of AT&T (NYSE:T).

It’s been 25 years since Judge Greene ordered AT&T to be broken up, and the pieces are now all over the place. One of the rules of the breakup order is that the new companies had to have worse and worse sounding names. This started with Nynex and continued through with Lucent, Avaya and Agere.

In 2000, Avaya was spun-off from Lucent, which isn’t even Lucent anymore - it’s Alcatel-Lucent (ALU). Although I doubt the hyphen will stay around much longer. In 1996, AT&T spun-off Lucent. I remember I sold my shares almost immediately and the stock shot up from there.

If you’re old enough to remember those old-style rotary phones, those phones weren’t owned by customers, they were leased from Ma Bell. Well, that business still exists and Lucent runs it. If you’ve ever wondered why New York City’s area code is 212, it’s because it’s fast on a rotary phone.

According to Lucent, they lease about 750,000 phones today.

AV 1-yr chart: