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3Com, Siemens to name venture head

The networking company next week is expected to appoint a head for its $100 million joint venture with the German systems giant, according to sources close to the company.

3Com next week is expected to appoint a head for its $100 million joint venture with systems giant Siemens, according to sources close to the company.

And though speculation has circled that Siemens is looking to buy 3Com's carrier-oriented business, such talk is unfounded and has been fueled by the two companies' discussions on finalizing the joint venture, sources said.

Under the venture, a Siemens executive will serve as general manager and each company will have one representative on the small board of directors, sources said.

According to a Siemens spokeswoman, an announcement is expected soon, but she declined to comment further.

Meanwhile, Troy McCombs, a spokesman from 3Com, would not comment on the pending announcement. "We don't comment on rumors," he said.

The two companies in December announced they would form the multimillion-dollar venture to create telephony products to send voice and data calls over local corporate networks, or LANs.

Products expected to come out the venture include multimedia exchanges, or gateways, for voice, video, and data traffic and phones and adapters based on Ethernet networking technology, according to the companies. Also likely to play a role in the sales of these tools are 3Com's switching devices and accompanying network management software applications.

The products will be sold under the Siemens HiNet, and 3Com SuperStack II and CoreBuilder brand names.

Operations for the joint venture will be headquartered in the United States and include 200 engineers from both companies.