Press Clippings: April 2011

Major Industry items you might have missed

Saturday, April 30, 2011

FTC prepping Google probe.

Source: Reuters.

The FTC is alerting high-tech companies to gather data ahead of a probe of the dominance of Google Inc in the Internet search industry, Bloomberg reported on Friday.
The report said the agency told companies it plans to issue civil investigative demands — which are similar to subpoenas — for the information.

Posted by Judith — 3:09 AM

Friday, April 29, 2011

Nokia Siemens completes takeover of Motorola networks.

Source: Telecompaper.

Nokia Siemens Networks has completed the acquisition of the Motorola networks business from Motorola Solutions for US$975m. As of 30 April, responsibility for supporting networks based on Motorola’s GSM, CDMA, WCDMA, Wimax and LTE equipment transfers to NSN. This includes contracts with 50 operators in 52 countries, as well as the transfer of 6,900 employees to NSN. The acquisition strengthens NSNs’ position in key regions, particularly North America and Japan.

Posted by Judith — 5:01 AM

Smartphone boom lifts phone market in first quarter.

Source: Reuters.

Strong demand for smartphones gave a further boost to overall cellphone market volumes in January-March.
The January-March market grew by 20%, helped by strong gains by smaller vendors as the three largest phone makers — Nokia, Samsung Electronics and LG Electronics — lost market share.
Apple’s iPhone sales more than doubled from a year ago with market share rising to 5%.
Apple is now within striking distance to LG, who had 6.6% market share in the quarter. Nokia’s share dropped to 29% from 35% a year ago, while Samsung slipped to 19%.

Posted by Judith — 1:54 AM

ZTE sues Huawei in China for patent infringement.

Source: Reuters.

ZTE, China’s No.2 telecommunications equipment maker, has filed a lawsuit against larger Chinese rival Huawei Technologies in China, a day after it was sued by the latter in Europe.

Posted by Judith — 1:39 AM

Thursday, April 28, 2011

CenturyLink to acquire Savvis for US$2.5bn. to boost cloud services.

Source: WSJ.

CenturyLink has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Savvis for about US$2.5bn. in cash and stock, as the telecom provider looks to expand its hosting and cloud capabilities for business customers.
CenturyLink and Savvis, which provides services to support ATM and Internet protocol, will together operate 48 data centres in North America, Europe, and Asia, a national 207,000 route mile fibre network and a 190,000 mile global access network.

Posted by Judith — 4:08 AM

Rogers to launch LTE network in 2011.

Source: Telecompaper.

Canadian operator Rogers Communications will launch its LTE network this year. Rogers will launch commercial LTE network services in Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver and Ottawa this year, with the top 25 markets across Canada coming online in 2012.

Posted by Judith — 2:42 AM

Apple to scale back location data collected on iPhones.

Source: Telecompaper.

Apple has denied collecting personal information on the location of iPhone users and said it will change the way some location data is stored on the phone to address security concerns.

Posted by Judith — 1:43 AM

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Nokia hands Symbian to Accenture, to shed 7,000 jobs.

Source: Telecompaper.

Nokia has announced plans to outsource its Symbian software activities to Accenture and shed 7,000 jobs across its operations. The preliminary agreement with Accenture will see the company take over around 3,000 Nokia employees and provide Symbian-based software development and support services to Nokia for future smartphones. Accenture had already acquired Nokia’s professional services unit that provides engineering and support of the Symbian OS to handset makers and service providers.

Posted by Judith — 2:49 AM

VimpelCom to invest up to US$500m. in Vietnam.

Source: cellular-news.

Russia’s VimpelCom says that it has committed to invest up to US$500m. by 2013 in its Vietnamese joint venture, GTEL-Mobile. The Company has completed the first stage of the financing plan by paying US$196m. for newly issued shares and thereby increasing its stake in GTEL-Mobile from 40% to 49%.

Posted by Judith — 1:19 AM

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

T-Mobile, Orange unveil Austrian 3G infrastructure partnership.

Source: TeleGeography.

Austrian cellcos T-Mobile and Orange have announced a network partnership agreement concerning the joint use of their existing 3G infrastructure in rural areas. The collaboration between the two operators will reportedly benefit over six million customers across the country.

Posted by Judith — 1:55 AM

Google bids for another batch of mobile phone patents.

Source: cellular-news.

Google is reported to have mad a bid of US$2m. to buy up the patent portfolio held by the failed Israeli phone manufacturer, Modu.
Google has been stepping up its efforts to buy wireless telecoms patents as a defensive move against being sued over the Android smartphone platform, and although a tiny amount compared to the US$900m. bid for a block of Nortel patents, the portfolio comprises over 100 patents.

Posted by Judith — 1:11 AM

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Google fined US$5m over Linux patent row.

Source: BBC.

A judgement by a Texas jury against Google could have major implications for the search giant and the open source world said experts.
The internet titan was found guilty of infringing a patent related to the Linux kernel and fined US$5m (GBP3.2m).
The implication here is really that there is a huge number of Linux users who will be required to pay royalties if this patent holder knocks on their doors in the US. This is definitely a major impediment to the growth of Linux and makes companies, including Google, that rely on open source code particularly vulnerable to patent threats.

Posted by Judith — 1:59 AM

Friday, April 22, 2011

Samsung counter sues Apple over iPhone, iPad.

Source: Reuters.

Samsung Electronics Co has filed patent lawsuits against Apple over the U.S. firm’s iPhone and iPad in a tit-for-tat case after Apple claimed Samsung’s smartphones and tablets “slavishly” copied its products.
The legal battle between Apple and Samsung could jeopardize business ties between the two technology companies as Apple depends heavily on Samsung for components such as chips and LCD displays.

Posted by Judith — 2:52 AM

T-Mobile, Orange unveil 3G network alliance in Austria.

Source: Telecompaper.

T-Mobile Austria and Orange Austria have announced a network co-operation for joint use of their existing 3G infrastructure in rural areas. The co-operation will benefit over 6m. customers across Austria.

Posted by Judith — 1:52 AM

Thursday, April 21, 2011

China Telecom forming Canadian arm.

Source: The Globe and Mail.

The North American arm of China Telecom is upgrading its presence in Canada, making its Toronto-area office into a full-fledged subsidiary to serve multinational companies and international telecom carriers.
Donald Tan, president of China Telecom Americas, said the company has had an office in Canada for more than five years but demand for communication links with China and the Asia-Pacific region has increased.

Posted by Judith — 2:00 AM

China Mobile users pass 600m.

Source: Businessweek.

China Mobile has become the world’s first phone company to exceed 600m. subscribers as it signed up more rural customers in the first quarter.
The company added 16.8m. subscribers in the first quarter, an almost 3% increase from the 584m. customers at the end of December.

Posted by Judith — 1:45 AM

KPN issues profit warning.

Source: TeleGeography.

The Netherlands’ largest telecoms group by subscribers and revenues, KPN Telecom (or Royal KPN as it is also known), has said it may not meet its financial targets in fiscal 2011 and warned that it is looking to cut 5,000 jobs by 2015.

Posted by Judith — 1:41 AM

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Sprint, Clearwire sign new wholesale agreement.

Source: Telecompaper.

Sprint Nextel and Clearwire announced changes to their long-term agreement that establishes new wholesale pricing terms and provides Clearwire with a minimum of US$1bn. from Sprint in 2011 and 2012.

Posted by Judith — 2:47 AM

NZ’s MED, Telecom, Vodafone reach RBI agreement

Source: TeleGeography.

New Zealand’s Ministry of Economic Development has announced that the government has reached a joint agreement with Telecom New Zealand and Vodafone New Zealand regarding its long-running Rural Broadband Initiative. The government will provide the operators with a NZ$285m.(US$224.3m.) grant to assist with the six-year project.

Posted by Judith — 1:43 AM

Alfa Group seeks to dissolve Vimpelcom shareholder agreement with Telenor.

Source: TeleGeography.

Vimpelcom shareholder Alfa Group has announced that it is looking to dissolve its shareholder agreement with fellow stakeholder Telenor. The announcement was made just hours after Vimpelcom completed its long-running US$6.5bn. merger with Wind Telecom.

Posted by Judith — 1:09 AM

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Apple sues Samsung.

Source: Reuters.

Apple has sued Samsung Electronics, claiming the South Korean firm’s Galaxy line of mobile phones and tablets “slavishly” copies the iPhone and iPad, a move analysts say is aimed at keeping its close rivals at bay.

Posted by Judith — 2:48 AM

Acer creates Touch division for mobiles.

Source: Telecompaper.

Acer announced a major reorganisation of its business, effectively splitting the company into two divisions, for mobile devices and PCs. The move comes as the company issued another sales warning, saying it expects its PC shipments in the second quarter to fall by around 10% from the previous quarter.

Posted by Judith — 1:13 AM

Monday, April 18, 2011

Vimpelcom confirms closing of ‘large and complex’ Wind Telecom deal.

Source: TeleGeography.

Russian telco Vimpelcom and Wind Telecom have announced the closing of the US$6.5bn. transaction that combines the two entities to create a new global telecoms group. The combination of Vimpelcom and Wind Telecom creates the world’s sixth largest mobile telecoms provider in terms of subscribers, with operations in 20 countries.

Posted by Judith — 4:26 AM

Alfa to acquire AT&T’s 49% stake in Alestra.

Source: Telecompaper.

AT&T and Alfa have reached an agreement for Alfa to acquire AT&T’s 49% stake in Mexican fixed-line operator Alestra. Following the completion of the acquisition, Alfa will be the sole shareholder of Alestra.

Posted by Judith — 3:15 AM

DT, FT-Orange to form 50/50 procurement JV

Source: Telecompaper.

Deutsche Telekom and France Telecom-Orange have signed a preliminary agreement to form a 50/50 joint venture in the fourth quarter to combine their customer equipment, network equipment, service platforms and IT infrastructure procurement. This is the next chapter in a partnership Deutsche Telecom and France Telecom-Orange announced on 11 February.

Posted by Judith — 2:12 AM

Saturday, April 16, 2011

MeeGo sees interest from others after Nokia shift.

Source: Reuters.

Technology firms such as LG Electronics are moving toward adopting the Linux-based MeeGo operating system after Nokia abandoned it.
Open-source MeeGo was created last year by the merger of Nokia and Intel’s Linux-based platforms, but Nokia pulled back from the project in February when the Finnish firm said it would focus on Microsoft software instead.

Posted by Judith — 2:22 AM

Friday, April 15, 2011

Verizon Wireless announces 7th rural LTE carrier deal.

Source: FierceBroadbandWireless.

Verizon Wireless has announced its seventh rural carrier partner that has joined its LTE in Rural America program.
Indiana-based S and R Communications—a joint venture between two rural landline telecom companies, Swayzee Communications and Rochester Telephone Co.—plans to lease Verizon’s 700 MHz spectrum and build a fiber and tower network to deliver LTE services.
Bluegrass Cellular, Cellcom, Cross Wireless, Pioneer Cellular, Strata Networks and Thumb Wireless have to date leased spectrum from Verizon covering, in total, more than 1.8m. people.

Posted by Judith — 2:47 AM

Telefonica Telefonica Germany, Turk Telecom announce strategic alliance.

Source: Telecompaper.

Telefonica Germany and Turk Telekom Group have announced a strategic alliance to market communications services that leverage both operators’ fixed and mobile services, content, applications, distribution and brands.

Posted by Judith — 1:58 AM

AT&T, T-Mobile to file with FCC around April 21.

Source: Reuters.

AT&T and T-Mobile USA plan to file paperwork about their planned merger with the FCC next week.
AT&T’s US$39bn. bid to buy Deutsche Telekom’s T-Mobile USA will also be reviewed by the Justice Department to ensure it does not violate antitrust law.

Posted by Judith — 1:46 AM

Shaw delaying mobile launch again.

Source: TeleGeography.

Western Canada’s largest cable network operator Shaw Communications has announced that it will slow plans to roll out a mobile network to focus on its core triple-play cable and satellite TV businesses. The company said it faces heightened competition which has increased the level of risk in its forecasts, with increased pressure coming from its main competitor in the western provinces, quadruple-play provider Telus.

Posted by Judith — 1:09 AM

Telecom NZ sells 49% Yahoo!Xtra stake to Yahoo!7.

Source: Telecompaper.

Telecom NZ has sold its shares in Yahoo!Xtra to Yahoo!7. Yahoo!7 therefore owns 100% of Yahoo!Xtra. The current commercial partnership for Yahoo!7 to support Telecom NZ’s broadband customer base will continue. The Yahoo!Xtra business will rebrand to Yahoo! New Zealand with all Yahoo!Xtra staff remaining employed by Yahoo! New Zealand.

Posted by Judith — 1:00 AM

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Motorola, Huawei agree to end legal disputes.

Source: Telecompaper.

Motorola and Huawei have agree to end their legal disputes, removing a barrier to the sale of the Motorola networks business to Nokia Siemens Networks.
Both companies will withdraw their claims in the US and Huawei has agreed to allow Motorola Solutions to transfer its commercial agreements with Huawei to NSN for a fee. This allows NSN to receive and use Huawei confidential information to service the networks Motorola deployed worldwide using Huawei’s products and technologies.

Posted by Judith — 2:41 AM

Fujitsu offers UK fast rural broadband network.

Source: BBC.

Fujitsu is to create a superfast broadband network for rural parts of the UK, rivalling BT’s service.
Virgin Media and TalkTalk have already said they will use it to provide internet services. It will also be open to local authorities.
Much of the system will be built on BT infrastructure, such as underground ducting and phone poles, which it has been forced to open up to competitors.
Fujitsu wants GBP500m. of government money to help fund the project.
That would account for the lion’s share of the GBP530m. the government has set aside to stimulate rural broadband projects.

Posted by Judith — 1:33 AM

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

TV airwaves needed to counter wireless crunch.

Source: Reuters.

Some U.S. airwaves used for free, over-the-air TV signals must be repurposed for mobile broadband use to tackle a looming spectrum crisis.
The FCC wants Congress to grant it authority to hold incentive auctions that would compensate television broadcasters for giving up some of their spectrum to wireless companies.
However, broadcasters have been resistant to the agency’s proposal, worried about the unintended consequences that parting with airwaves could have on their TV signals and the viewers they serve.

Posted by Judith — 4:22 AM

Intel to open Finnish R&D site as Nokia cuts back.

Source: Reuters.

Intel plans to open a new research and development site in Finland, starting with some 200 staff at a time when Finnish partner Nokia is to unveil large job cuts.
Google and Skype have said openly they are seeking to tap into Finnish engineering talent looking for new jobs following Nokia’s announcement.

Posted by Judith — 2:21 AM

Cisco scales back consumer operations, to cut 550 jobs.

Source: Telecompaper.

Cisco Systems announced plans to restructure its consumer business and move away from direct sales to consumers. The plans include the closure of its Flip video camera business, as well as a refocusing of its Home Networking business in order to improve profitability and more closely tie it to the company’s core networking infrastructure operations.

Posted by Judith — 1:29 AM

Government agrees to revise mobile licence renewal terms.

Source: TeleGeography.

The government of Bangladesh has agreed to revise the draft 2G mobile network operating licence renewal terms and to keep spectrum fees at a ‘rational’ level, following negotiations with cellcos, namely GrameenPhone, Banglalink, Robi and CityCell.

Posted by Judith — 1:14 AM

U.S. lagging in using technology.

Source: NYT.

The United States continues to lag other nations in its use of computing and communications technology, according to an annual study by the World Economic Forum.
For the second consecutive year, the United States finished fifth in the study’s comparison of 138 countries that make up 98.8% of the world’s total gross domestic product. Sweden was first, followed by Singapore, Finland and Switzerland.

Posted by Judith — 1:03 AM

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

India’s New Policy to Ease Telecom M&A.

Source: Light Reading

India’s telecom merger and acquisitions rules are set to be liberalized as part of the new Telecom Policy, the country’s Communications and IT Minister Kapil Sibal announced during a media briefing Monday. That’s a move that the industry’s been demanding for a while — currently an Indian operator can’t hold a stake of more than 10 percent in another company operating in the same market, a rule the carriers regard as restrictive — but it doesn’t mean the Indian mobile market is in danger of shrinking to just a handful of dominant players. As the Hindu Business Line reports, each of India’s 22 circles (service areas) will still have a minimum of six service providers to encourage competition and ensure that tariffs remain affordable for the mass market.

Posted by Sarah — 12:20 PM

SingTel’s Airtel stake reaches 32.25%.

Source: TeleGeography

Dow Jones Newswires reports that Singapore Telecommunications (SingTel) has increased its stake in Indian telecoms heavyweight Bharti Airtel to 32.25% by buying 2.83 million shares for INR934m (USD21m). In a filing to the Singapore Stock Exchange, SingTel said it purchased the shares on the open market via wholly owned unit Viridian Ltd.

Posted by Sarah — 12:19 PM

Monday, April 11, 2011

Level 3 Buying Global Crossing.

Source: Light Reading

Level 3 Communications Inc. hit the M&A trail Monday, announcing that it would buy Global Crossing in a stock-for-stock deal valued at US$1.9bn (after assumed debt) that will create a company that had combined 2010 revenues of $6.26bn.
The deal comes into play about eight months after Global Crossing CEO John Legere indentified Global Crossing, Level 3, Paetec Communications Inc., Savvis Inc., XO Communications Inc. and tw telecom inc. as candidates that might come together in some way to establish a strong third player to compete with AT&T Inc. and Verizon Business .

Posted by Sarah — 12:05 PM

Vocus buys ailing Australian fibre network.

Source: The Register

Troubled dark fibre provider Digital River has been acquired by Vocus Communications, giving the Australian wholesaler nearly 60 Km of operational fibre in Sydney and Melbourne at the bargain-basement price of A$3.95m (US$4.15m)
Digital River was founded in 2001 to build a network serving Melbourne CBD premises, and later expanded to Sydney. The company has struggled to succeed, and last year suffered a rash of management changes reaching all the way to the CEO.
Announcing the acquisition, Vocus CEO James Spenceley said his company would be able to add metro fibre services to its existing data centre and IP transit products.

Posted by Sarah — 12:01 PM

Government assumes management of Libyan-controlled telco.

Source: TeleGeography

Dow Jones Newswires writes that the government of Uganda has assumed management control of the country’s troubled Libyan-owned telco, Uganda Telecom. In a statement earlier this month, Uganda’s minister of information and communications technology, Aggry Awori, said that as a shareholder the state could not simply ‘sit and watch’, and stepped in to safeguard its interests and those of the telco’s customers.

Posted by Sarah — 12:00 PM

KDG rolls out 100Mbps broadband to a further ten cities.

Source: TeleGeography

German cable operator Kabel Deutschland (KDG) aims to launch its 100Mbps broadband internet service in a further ten cities and their surrounding areas by the end of June 2011. The launch will enable around 450,000 additional households in the cities of Hildesheim and Oldenburg (Lower Saxony), Glinde, Norderstedt, Pinneberg and Reinbek (Schleswig-Holstein), and Arnstadt, Erfurt, Gera, and Gotha (Thuringia) to benefit from KDG’s 100Mbps internet products, at the same time boosting coverage of the service to more than 50% of the company’s upgraded footprint.

Posted by Sarah — 11:57 AM

Friday, April 8, 2011

CPS: We won’t prosecute over BT/Phorm secret trials.

Source: The Register

The Crown Prosecution Service confirmed today that it would not be prosecuting anyone in BT’s secret trials of Phorm’s web monitoring system. “We have decided not to consent to a request from an individual to begin a prosecution of BT Group Plc and Phorm Inc in relation to alleged unlawful interception of internet browsing data,” said the CPS in a statement on its website.

Posted by Sarah — 12:26 PM

C&W completes purchase of BTC.

Source: TeleGeography

Executives of London-based Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC) signed off on the acquisition of 51% of The Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) at a press conference in The Bahamas Cabinet Office yesterday. The government has received full payment for the transaction - the USD210m purchase price and in-kind and cash completion dividends from BTC of USD14.3m.

Posted by Sarah — 12:24 PM

Thursday, April 7, 2011

FCC Votes to Require AT&T, Verizon to Share Networks for Data.

Source: Businessweek

AT&T Inc. and Verizon Wireless must let smaller competitors use their networks for mobile Internet service under rules approved today by a divided Federal Communications Commission.
The agency voted 3-2 with Democrats approving and Republicans dissenting to require large wireless carriers to strike commercial agreements with smaller carriers. Such agreements are voluntary now.

Posted by Sarah — 11:40 AM

Aircel, Etisalat DB and SSTL all receive licence termination notices from DoT.

Source: TeleGeography

India’s Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has reportedly issued notices regarding the termination of mobile network operating licences to three cellcos, according to India’s Economic Times. The regulator specifically revealed that it has issued notices to the operators in question - Aircel, Etisalat and Sistema Shyam TeleServices (SSTL) - for delays in the rollout of commercial services.

Posted by Sarah — 11:39 AM

Deutsche Telekom Goes Live With LTE.

Source: Light Reading

True to its word, Deutsche Telekom just officially launched commercial LTE services in Germany. The German giant said at the end of last year that it planned to start offering the Call & Surf Comfort via Funk service in April to rural areas that are not served by DSL. And a press release from the operator heralds the launch of the service.

Posted by Sarah — 11:36 AM

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Irish Operators Strike First Network Share Deal.

Source: Light Reading

O2 Ireland and eircom have joined forces in a partnership to share their mobile networks in Ireland. The partnership is the first mobile network sharing deal in the country, but O2 Ireland’s mother company, Telef√≥nica Europe plc (O2) has done this kind of deal before. O2 Ireland (which has about 1.7m mobile subscribers) and eircom (which has just over 1m mobile customers) have agreed to share site equipment, power supply, technology and transmission. The operators said they will try to consolidate existing sites wherever possible, and that they will build any new sites together. A dedicated team of existing employees from both companies will manage the build and operation of the distinct networks.

Posted by Sarah — 11:32 AM

Commnet Wireless creates joint venture with tribal stimulus winner.

Source: Connected Planet

Atlantic Tele-Network, the company that now owns a substantial part of the former Alltel Wireless, said today that its Commnet Wireless subsidiary has created a joint venture with the Navajo Tribal Utility Authority to provide mobile 3G and 4G wireless using a network constructed in part with USD32.1m provided through the broadband stimulus program.

Posted by Sarah — 11:29 AM

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Verizon pays US$93.5m to settle false claims case

Source: Reuters

Verizon Communications has agreed to pay US$93.5m to settle allegations that it overcharged the U.S. government on contracts for voice and data services, the U.S. Justice Department said on Tuesday.
Verizon’s MCI Communications Services Inc unit was accused of invoicing the General Services Administration for various taxes and surcharges in violation of contracts or regulations, the Justice Department said.

Posted by Sarah — 12:27 PM

ISPs tussle over broadband access.

Source: BBC

Internet service providers have asked the government to intervene over the price being set to give them access to BT’s physical infrastructure.
Giving rivals access to BT ducts and poles is seen as a crucial element to get fast broadband to rural areas.
But ISPs argue that the prices set by BT are four to five times higher than their underlying costs.
BT said that its prices were reasonable and laid down the gauntlet to rivals.
“The fact is our proposed prices for duct access compare very well with European averages,” the telco said in a statement.

Posted by Sarah — 12:26 PM

Verivue Courts Carrier CDNs .

Source: Light Reading

Verivue Inc. is capitalizing on the rush of cable and telecom service providers into the Content Delivery Network (CDN) business, unveiling Tuesday a CDN-in-a-box approach that combines the elements needed to get into that business quickly.
The OneVantageT Content Delivery Solution combines Verivue’s capabilities with those it acquired last fall when it bought CoBlitz. Polish telecom operator Telekomunikacja Polska SA has already deployed OneVantage, primarily to deliver online coverage of live events.
More service providers are choosing to build their own CDNs, in part to be able to protect their broadband customer base, says Jim Dolce, CEO of Verivue

Posted by Sarah — 12:23 PM

Bouygues Telecom turns 700,000 Bboxes into hotspots.

Source: Telecompaper

French fixed and mobile operator Bouygues Telecom has confirmed its launch of a community Wi-Fi service using an installed base of 700,000 Bbox gateways in customer homes, following a report at website Subscribers to Bbox, Ideo, Evasio.2 and Neo.4 plans will be able to connect securely to the internet via Wi-Fi when they are within the range of a Bbox hotspot.

Posted by Sarah — 12:22 PM

Monday, April 4, 2011

Vodafone to sell SFR mobile phone stake to Vivendi.

Source: BBC

Vodafone is to sell its 44% stake in the French mobile phone operator SFR to Vivendi for 7.95bn euros (US$11.29bn).
The deal gives Vivendi, France’s biggest mobile phone business, full control of SFR and ends months of talks with Vodafone.
The UK company has been slimming down its portfolio, and recently sold stakes in Chinese and Japanese mobile operators.

Posted by Sarah — 11:23 AM

Televisa to take full ownership of Cablemas.

Source: TeleGeography

Mexican media giant Grupo Televisa has revealed that it will buy the remaining shares it does not hold in local triple-play provider Cablemas for approximately MXN4.7bn (US$397m), according to the Wall Street Journal. Televisa has said that it will bring its holding in the cableco to 100% by acquiring the 41.7% of stock it does not already own, following which Cablemas will be merged into Televisa, with some 25 million Televisa CPO shares then issued as a result of the transaction. Televisa also noted that the deal, coupled with a recent pre-payment of US$225m in Cablemas senior notes, will complete the capital and debt restructuring at the cableco.

Posted by Sarah — 11:22 AM

Indian minister and telcos charged in 2G scandal.

Source: The Inquirer

A number of key telecom figures in India have been charged in a scandal over alleged rigging of sales of 2G phone licences and further charges are expected.
One of the officials caught up in the debacle is Andimuthu Raja, who held the role of telecommunications minister before being forced to resign last year. India’s Central Bureau of Investigation charged him for involvement with the improper sales, which cost the state around US$39bn.
A number of companies that allegedly were wrongly awarded licences have also been charged. These included Reliance Telecom, Swan Telecom and Unitech Wireless. Another eight individuals classed as “co-conspirators” were also charged. All parties including the former minister have denied the charges.

Posted by Sarah — 11:20 AM

BT to extend next generation copper broadband to around 80 per cent of the UK.

Source: BT

BT Wholesale today announced its intent to extend the availability of next generation copper broadband - offering customers speeds of up to 20Mbps* - by enabling exchanges serving around 80 per cent of UK homes and businesses by the end of 2011.
BT Wholesale’s ADSL2+ copper broadband service, called Wholesale Broadband Connect (WBC), is now available from more than 1,000 exchanges* - serving more than 15.5 million end user premises. Already more than 2.25 million end users are enjoying this advanced copper service and BT is upgrading c. 30,000 additional lines per week.

Posted by Sarah — 11:19 AM

Tinet Rolls Out EtherCloud Coverage .

Source: Light Reading

Neutral Tandem Inc.’s international network subsidiary Tinet today announced a global wholesale Layer 2 Ethernet offering called EtherCloud that should spark a new round of marketing efforts from the small but increasingly high-profile group of Ethernet exchange service providers.
Tinet, which was acquired last year by Neutral Tandem, is offering Ethernet service providers the opportunity to connect to any of its 120 international points of presence (PoPs) in order to interconnect with other Ethernet service providers around the world. Most of the PoPs are in Europe and North America, with Hong Kong and Singapore giving Tinet some Tier 1 Asia/Pacific locations.

Posted by Sarah — 11:17 AM

Friday, April 1, 2011

South Africa’s Telkom sells part of Multi-Links.

Source: Reuters

Africa’s largest telephone group Telkom is selling part of its loss-making Multi-Links operation in Nigeria for US$52m to Visafone Communications, sending its shares higher.
South Africa-based Telkom paid US$330m three years ago for the Nigerian business which posted an operating loss of 262m rand (US$37.42m) in the six months to end-September.
Telkom said on Friday it will retain Multi-Links’ fiber network and fixed-line units in Nigeria.

Posted by Sarah — 11:21 AM

LightSquared: GPS Issues Won’t Stall Launch.

Source: Light Reading

Would-be 4G wholesale provider LightSquared says it’s still on track to launch initial Long Term Evolution (LTE) markets in the U.S. by the end of 2011 despite renewed interest from some government bodies about the potential for interference to GPS receivers from the new network.
The Harbinger Capital Partners LP -backed venture has previously said it wants to launch its first LTE markets in the third quarter of 2011, with up to nine markets expected to be active by the end of the year.

Posted by Sarah — 11:19 AM

London Underground’s mobile plans hit buffers.

Source: BBC

Plans to offer mobile phone coverage on the London Underground have been derailed because of high costs. Talks between Chinese telecoms provider Huawei and the UK’s operators have broken down.
They had agreed to examine the idea of getting coverage on the tube in time for the London 2012 Olympics.
But putting antennas throughout the Tube’s antiquated network have proved too costly.

Posted by Sarah — 11:13 AM

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