Financial

Regulatory moves to boost India telecoms sector in 2014: report

Indian telecoms authorities are planning to introduce new rules on mergers and acquisitions in January, aimed at providing a further boost to the country’s telecoms industry.

According to a report from the country’s Business Standard newspaper, the legislation on mergers and acquisitions is to be followed by the publication of a new policy on machine-to-machine communications in the first quarter of the year.

Moves already made by Indian regulatory authorities have led to a considerable improvement in the operating environment in 2013 compared with 2012.

Fortress backs new LightSquared bankruptcy exit plan

Reuters

LightSquared is proposing a new bankruptcy exit plan with financing from Fortress Investment Group and other backers, as the U.S. wireless communications company seeks to avoid a sale to highest bidder Dish Network Corp.

In telecom merger mania, skeptical eye from Obama administration

Reuters

A pair of potentially transformative U.S. telecoms and cable deals could run afoul of Obama administration regulators who worry that mergers among market leaders would hurt consumers.

With both cable and mobile phone operators grappling with slowing growth, speculation has intensified recently about potential takeovers of No. 4 wireless service provider T-Mobile US Inc (Bellevue, WA, USA) and No. 2 cable service provider Time Warner Cable Inc (New York City, NY, USA).

VimpelCom in talks with Hutchison over Wind Italy: report

VimpelCom is mulling a potential sale or merger of its Italian mobile business, according to the UK’s Financial Times newspaper.

The operator – whose biggest market is Russia – is reportedly in discussions with Hutchison Whampoa about the future of Wind (Rome, Italy), its second-biggest subsidiary and Italy’s third-biggest mobile operator.

Ooredoo launches Algeria's first 3G network

Qatari incumbent Ooredoo has launched what it claims is the first 3G network in Algeria, where it is the smallest of the country’s three mobile network operators.

In a statement, Ooredoo (Doha, Qatar) – formerly known as Qtel – said it had switched on its network in the country’s ten biggest cities just hours after getting the final regulatory sign-off.

Although it promises its 3G services will be available “at no additional cost”, the operator requires customers to procure a second 3G-enabled number (which it will supply) and add this to their SIM cards.

PCCW to pay $2.43 billion for CSL

Hong Kong’s PCCW has announced plans to buy Telstra’s 76% stake in local rival CSL for the sum of $2.43 billion.

The deal will put PCCW (Hong Kong) in control of assets it sold more than ten years ago, reports Bloomberg, and help to reduce the level of competition in Hong Kong’s saturated phone market, where there are approximately twice as many subscriptions as people.

Huawei expects 4G revenues to double in 2014: report

Chinese telecoms equipment vendor Huawei expects annual revenues from its sale of 4G networks to double to about $4 billion between 2013 and 2014, according to a report from Reuters.

Speaking to reporters in Shanghai, David Wang, the president of Huawei’s (Shenzhen, China) wireless network business unit, also said that overall wireless revenues would hit $12.9 billion in 2014, compared with $11.7 billion in 2013.

TeliaSonera spends $72 million on fiber assets

Sweden’s TeliaSonera has announced several acquisitions aimed at boosting its presence in the country’s high-speed broadband market.

In a statement, the operator said it had spent a total of SEK473 million ($72 million) on controlling stakes in fiber players Zitius, Quadracom Networks and Riksnet.

AT&T to sell Connecticut wireline assets to Frontier for $2 billion

Reuters

AT&T Inc, the biggest U.S. phone company, said on Tuesday that it would sell its wireline operations in Connecticut to regional telephone operator Frontier Communications for $2 billion in cash, to help fund network upgrades.

Frontier (Stamford, CT, USA) shares rose more than 8 percent after it said the deal would boost its dividend payout ratio, generate savings and improve its adjusted free cash flow.

Sprint considering $20 billion bid for T-Mobile: report

US operator Sprint is readying a bid of more than $20 billion for smaller rival T-Mobile US, according to a report from Dow Jones Newswires.

Citing people familiar with the matter, the newswire says Sprint is currently studying regulatory concerns but could launch a bid in the first half of next year.

A takeover would combine the country’s third- and fourth-biggest players to create a stronger rival to market leaders AT&T (Dallas, TX, USA) and Verizon Wireless (New York City, NY, USA).

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