Report: Canada’s Wind Mobile up for sale

Report: Canada’s Wind Mobile up for sale

25 MAR 2013
WIND

VimpelCom has reportedly set the wheels in motion to sell off its Wind Mobile subsidiary, a Canadian wireless start-up.

According to Dow Jones, the sale, organised by UBS, has drawn initial bids that value the Canadian firm at up to CAD$1 billion ($980 million).

Wind Mobile’s founder and chief executive, Anthony Lacavera – according to local press reports – has made a formal bid for the company though his holding company AAL Corp.

Naguib Sawiris, an Egyptian telecoms mogul – and who had originally invested in the Canadian start-up – is believed to be teaming up with AAL Corp through Accelero Capital, Sawiris’ investment firm.

Amsterdam-based VimpelCom has not officially confirmed that Wind Mobile is up for sale, a company it fully owns through its Orascom subsidiary.

Reuters says, however, that Vimpelcom is reviewing its asset portfolio, focusing on its most profitable businesses to help boost cashflow and reduce debt.

Launched in 2009, Wind Mobile took on the formidable task of challenging the dominance Canada’s big three – Bell Mobility, Rogers and Telus.

Progress has been slow. According to Dow Jones, Wind Mobile has 600,000 subscribers but the company had been aiming for 1.5 million subscribers after three years of operation.

Canada’s big three have more than 24 million wireless customers combined.

Author

Ken Wieland

Ken has been part of the MWC Mobile World Daily editorial team for the last three years, and is now contributing regularly to Mobile World Live. He has been a telecoms journalist for over 15 years, which includes eight...More

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