Telecom Italia not bidding for GVT: report

In what could be a blow to the European ambitions of Egypt’s Naguib Sawiris, Telecom Italia says it will not bid for GVT, Vivendi’s Brazilian phone business, according to Italy’s Il Sole 24 Ore newspaper.

Billionaire Sawiris this week confirmed that he would attempt to buy a stake in the Italian incumbent through a cash injection of €3 billion ($3.9 billion), but Telecom Italia (Rome, Italy) had previously hinted at a lack of interest unless it decided to proceed with a bid for GVT (Curitiba, Brazil).

Second wind for Egyptian telco tycoon Sawiris


Egyptian tycoon Naguib Sawiris is used to ruffling feathers and making headlines.

He was up to both on Tuesday, provoking shareholders at Telecom Italia (Rome, Italy) with proposals to make himself a significant shareholder at half the price they might want, while the political party he co-founded prepared for protests against Egypt's president.

Telefonica mulls IPO of LatAm businesses

Telefonica is weighing up whether to sell shares in its Latin American operations on the New York Stock Exchange, according to a report in Spain’s Expansion newspaper.

The various subsidiaries would be grouped into a Spanish holding company for trading sometime next year, reports the paper.

An IPO would help Telefonica (Madrid, Spain) to reduce its substantial pile of debt, which has continued to grow in recent years as the Spanish incumbent has expanded its international operations.

PCCW partnership wins fixed license in Oman

Oman has awarded a fixed-line telecoms license to a partnership between PCCW International and Awaser Oman Co, according to a statement filed by the country’s regulatory body.

The license covers the greater Muscat area – home to about 700,000 of Oman’s 2.8 million people – and is valid for a period of 25 years.

PCCW International (Hong Kong) and Awaser Oman Co (Muscat, Oman) will be able to provide both fixed-line voice and data services.

New tax to cost Magyar Telekom up to $50 million a year

Magyar Telekom expects a new tax approved by Hungary’s parliament on Tuesday to cost it between HUF9 billion ($41 million) and HUF11 billion a year from 2013 onwards.

Hungarian authorities have levied a charge of HUF125 per meter on the owners of ducts that support electricity, telecoms, natural gas, heating, water and wastewater services.

Telecoms operators must pay 20% of the per-meter rate for the first 170,000 meters, 40% for the next 80,000, 80,000% for the 50,000 after that and the full rate for anything in excess of 300,000 meters.

Telecom Italia considering bid for GVT: report

Telecom Italia has expressed interest in buying GVT, the Brazilian telecoms operator owned by France’s Vivendi.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Marco Patuano, Telecom Italia’s chief operating officer, said the Italian incumbent would evaluate a purchase of GVT (Curitiba, Brazil) during its board meeting next month, but would need additional capital to fund the takeover.

Speaking at this week’s Morgan Stanley TMT conference, Patuano is reported to have said that Egypt’s Naguib Sawiris could provide the means to invest in GVT.

SingTel profits down 1.6% on Australia competition, regulation

SingTel reported a 1.6% year-on-year fall in net profit for the September-ending quarter, to S$868 million ($710 million), with performance hit by price competition and unfavourable regulation in Australia’s mobile-phone market.

A rise in expenses and the impact of foreign exchange movements also weighed on the bottom line.

Overall revenues were just 0.8% lower than in the corresponding quarter of 2011, at S$4.572 billion, but revenues from Australia’s Optus fell by 3.6% to S$2.9 billion.

Orascom earnings boosted by forex gains

Egypt’s Orascom Telecom swung to a net profit of $106 million for the third quarter, compared with a net loss of $1.5 million in the same period last year, after foreign exchange gains boosted its earnings.

Performance was aided by a 7.6% reduction in capital expenditure as Orascom (Cairo, Egypt) slowed the pace of network expansion in Bangladesh and Pakistan.

But the operator, which merged with Russia’s VimpelCom (Amsterdam, Netherlands) last year, also blamed currency movements for a 4.4% drop in dollar-denominated revenues, to $885 million.

Telus profit lifted by wireless; dividend raised


Telus Corp reported a stronger third-quarter profit on Friday, as increased smartphone adoption boosted earnings from its wireless business and spurred the Canadian telecom company to raise its quarterly dividend.

Wireless data revenue jumped 23 percent in the third quarter ended September 30 as the proportion of postpaid subscribers using smartphones rose to 63 percent, from 48 percent a year earlier.

The Vancouver-based company, one of Canada's largest telecom players, raised its quarterly dividend to 64 Canadian cents a share, from 61 Canadian cents.

Egypt's Sawiris considering Telecom Italia investment

Egyptian telecoms tycoon Naguib Sawiris has reportedly offered to spend as much as €5 billion ($6.4 billion) on a stake in Telecom Italia, Italy’s debt-ridden telecoms incumbent, according to a report in Italy’s Il Corriere della Sera newspaper.

Citing sources close to the matter, the Italian daily reports that Franco Bernabe, the Italian operator’s chief executive, has put the offer before the board.

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