WSJ: 3Com to be bought by Bain Capital and Huawei Technologies of China for $2B
Canada's Nortel Networks was interested in 3Com, people close to the process have said. Nortel may have walked away because Bain secured the partnership of Huawei.
The reason why Huawei was crucial for Bain is that it has a non-compete with 3Com's crown jewel, a Chinese networking operation called H3C, which itself used to be a joint venture between 3Com and Huawei. If Nortel had won the auction, for example, it would have faced the prospect of competing against Huawei in short order.
Most of the rest of the value of 3Com is in its Tipping Point unit, which provides network security gear. 3Com has said it would sell shares of Tipping Point to the public; that plan would probably be scrapped as part of the buyout agreement.