Mobile operator Vodafone Greece is in the final stage of talks to acquire a stake of between 20% and 25% in Greek alternative broadband and fixed line operator Hellas On Line (HOL), according to regional news source Balkans.com quoting unnamed sources close to the talks. HOL is currently 63%-owned by Greek IT group Intracom, with another 25% belonging to Luxembourg-based World Equities Investments Holding. According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms database, Vodafone Greece partnered HOL in July 2007 to enter the broadband market by launching converged fixed/mobile/broadband service bundles, including ADSL and a Vodafone Home Zone/Office Zone telephony subscription. Vodafone launched standalone ADSL2+ broadband access services in October 2007 over HOL’s unbundled local loop (ULL) network. Intracom/HOL operates the second largest fibre-optic backbone network in the country after former telecoms monopoly OTE, and Intracom also owns a 39% stake in a smaller ULL broadband operator, Athens-based Teledome. In September 2008 HOL and fellow alternative telco Vivodi Telecom were in talks over a possible merger deal, but no further developments were reported.