AT&T follows Google in promising 1Gbps service for Austin

US operator AT&T is responding to Google’s entry into the high-speed broadband market by promising to launch its own ultra-fast offer in Austin, Texas – where the internet giant plans to switch on a 1Gbps service in mid-2014.

The operator this week said it had begun work on the deployment of a network in Austin that would match Google’s (Mountain View, CA, USA) on connection speeds when finally developed.

Telecom Italia chief Bernabe preparing to quit: report

Telecom Italia chief executive Franco Bernabe is planning on tendering his resignation at a board meeting scheduled for later this week, reports Bloomberg.

The boss of Italy’s biggest phone company has reportedly lost the support of Telco, the Telefonica-controlled consortium that holds a 22.4% stake in Telecom Italia (Milan, Italy), after clashing with shareholders over the operator’s strategy.

America Movil delays KPN bid to October: Dow Jones

America Movil has shifted the timing of its planned takeover of Dutch incumbent KPN to October from September, as negotiations over the acquisition drag on, according to a report from Dow Jones Newswires.

The Latin American telecoms giant – owned by Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim – announced plans for a €7.2 billion takeover of KPN (The Hague, Netherlands) in August, but it has subsequently run into opposition from an independent foundation set up to protect the interests of the Dutch incumbent.

Telenor buys into Asian, South American classifieds market

Reuters

Norwegian telecoms group Telenor entered the online classifieds market on Monday, taking a stake in a Southeast Asian venture and establishing a South American business, it said in a statement.

Telenor (Fornebu, Norway) will take a 33.3 percent stake in Southeast Asia focused 701 Search, an existing venture between Singapore Press Holdings and Norwegian publishing house Schibsted, and agreed to establish a 50/50 joint venture with Schibsted to create SnT Classifieds with a focus on South America.

Telefonica tightens hold on Telecom Italia, avoids takeover bid

Reuters

Spanish telecoms group Telefonica has struck a deal to gradually secure control of Telecom Italia and its lucrative South American business without having to launch a full takeover bid.

The multi-part 860 million euro ($1.2 billion) cash and shares deal secured on Tuesday will allow Telefonica (Madrid, Spain) to raise its stake in Telco, the holding company controlling about 22 percent of Telecom Italia (Milan, Italy), allowing Telco's other investors, Intesa Sanpaolo (Turin, Italy), Generali (Trieste, Italy) and Mediobanca (Milan, Italy) to eventually bow out.

EU authorities approve Vodafone takeover of Kabel Deutschland

European Union (EU) authorities have approved Vodafone’s €7.7 billion ($10.4 billion) takeover of Kabel Deutschland, clearing the way for a deal aimed at creating a player that can stand up to incumbent Deutsche Telekom in the market for so-called multi-play offerings.

“The Commission’s investigation confirmed that the activities of the merging parties were mainly complementary,” said the European Commission in a statement.

Deutsche Telekom to pick Scout24 buyer from four bidders: magazine

Reuters

German phone company Deutsche Telekom will pick a buyer for its online classified advertising business Scout24 from four private equity firms, Focus magazine reported on Saturday.

Bidders Apax (London, UK), Silver Lake (Menlo Park, CA, USA), Hellman & Friedman (San Francisco, CA, USA) and TPG Capital (Fort Worth, TX, USA) must submit final bids by the end of October, the weekly magazine said, without citing a source.

The price range for Scout24 continues to be 1.5-2.0 billion euros ($2.03-2.70 billion), according to Focus.

National regulators round on EC telecoms proposals

Europe’s national regulatory authorities (NRAs) have rounded on proposed reforms by the European Commission (EC), arguing that regulation is being rushed through and will have dire implications for investment, competition and consumers across the region.

In a statement issued earlier this week, the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC), which represents the interests of Europe’s NRAs, expressed concern that new rules would mark a shift away from a pro-competition approach to one that favored market consolidation.

AT&T to expand in Latin America with America Movil deal

Reuters

AT&T Inc is planning to announce on Wednesday that it will expand its Latin American reach for business customers through a collaboration with Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim's America Movil.

AT&T (Dallas, TX, USA) will be able to do business in 15 countries, including Argentina, Chile and Colombia, through connections with America Movil (Mexico City, Mexico) networks, according to a representative for AT&T.

Omantel share price falls on goverment sale plans: Reuters

Investors have reacted glumly to the announcement by Oman’s government of plans to sell a 19% stake in Omantel, causing shares in the telecoms incumbent to fall to a ten-week low, reports Reuters.

Authorities have resurrected a plan to sell shares first unveiled in 2007, when eight operators from Europe, the Middle East and Asia managed to prequalify for the sale.

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