Telecom Italia confirmed its board of directors is exploring opportunities for investment and options to sell non-core assets, following speculation it is mulling a bid for Brazilian operator Nextel.
In a statement, the operator said the board undertook analysis of potential asset targets and divestment options at its annual shareholder meeting held yesterday (24 September), which will “be subject to further discussions and subsequent decisions”.
Bloomberg reported last week that Telecom Italia CEO Amos Genish was mulling a bid for Nextel and the deal would be discussed at the board meeting. The subsequent statement regarding potential M&A will no doubt fuel speculation regarding the move.
The company controls the country’s number three player, TIM Brasil, which GSMA Intelligence estimated had 57 million connections at the end of Q2. A move for Nextel would give it a larger market share and a boost in spectrum in metropolitan areas.
Nextel, which is currently owned by NII Holdings, is the country’s fifth-largest operator with 3.1 million connections.
In terms of divestments, Telecom Italia is reportedly exploring sales of its wholesale arm Sparkle and media unit Persidera.
Telecom Italia’s board used the statement to clarify a new organisational structure. The recent departure of CCO Pietro Scott Jovane appears to have been due to the position being abolished, with responsibilities now designated to two managers.
Lorenzo Forina was appointed director of the Chief Business and Top Clients office, with Stefano Azzi positioned as director of the Chief Consumer and Small Enterprise office.
The board also completed an overall update of the group’s corporate governance rules, including a new set of regulations for the board of directors.
The update comes as the operator’s two largest investors, Vivendi and Elliott Management, continue to be embroiled in a row over the running of the company.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back