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Lucent gives its chip spinoff a name

The company says it has chosen Agere Systems as the name of its soon-to-be spun off chip unit.

Lucent Technologies said Tuesday that it has chosen Agere Systems as the name of its soon-to-be spun off chip unit.

Lucent said in July that it planned to spin off its Microelectronics Group, which specializes in communications chips. Lucent said it plans an initial public offering for up to 20 percent of the new company to take place in the first quarter of 2001, with the remaining shares distributed to Lucent shareholders by the summer.

Agere, pronounced "a-GEAR," is the name of a network processor company Lucent acquired earlier this year. Lucent said the name has its roots in the Latin verb ago, meaning to lead, drive or act.

"Although we considered hundreds of names, we kept coming back to Agere, because of its meaning," said John Dickson, the head of Lucent's Microelectronics Group and the planned CEO of Agere.