Telecom Italia is working with US bank Morgan Stanley to establish the number of potential bidders for its Brazilian towers business – a key debt-repayment measure for the operator – according to Bloomberg.
The sale and leaseback in Brazil has been flagged up before by the Italian operator as it seeks to raise up to €4 billion, but this report indicates it is pressing ahead with plans.
In addition, the Italian operator is studying internally the sale and leaseback of its domestic towers business, another move previously mentioned by the operator.
And earlier this month Telecom Italia agreed to sell a 22.7 per cent stake in Telecom Argentina to Fintech Group, an investment firm, for $960 million.
A sale of the Italian company’s 7,000 towers in Brazil could deliver as much as €700 million ($951 million) towards the €4 billion target. Potential bidders include American Tower, which earlier this year bought 2,800 towers owned by Nextel in Brazil.
The 12,000 towers in Italy could be worth as much as €1 billion with potential bidders including EiTowers controlled by Silvio Berlusconi’s Mediaset. Other interested parties might include F2i, led by former TI exec Vito Gamberale and Spain’s Albertis. Another potential disposal to raise funds is TI Media, the domestic digital TV business.
Neither TI or Bloomberg would comment on whether the US bank was involved in the sale of the Brazilian business.