According to Reuters, Italian cellco Wind Telecomunicazioni (Wind Italy), the country’s third largest cellco in terms of subscribers, is interested in exploring acquisition talks with domestic rival 3 Italia, as well as broadband operators Fastweb and Tiscali. Citing comments by Egyptian tycoon Naguib Sawiris – who sold his telecoms holding company Wind Telecom (formerly Weather Investments) to Russian telecoms giant Vimpelcom in April – Reuters confirms that no deals are currently in the works. The transaction with Vimpelcom, which included 100% of Wind Italy and 51.7% of Orascom Telecom, among other interests, meant that Sawiris himself is now a shareholder in the enlarged Vimpelcom group.
Shares in Tiscali, which had a 4% share of Italian broadband subscribers at end-March 2011, reportedly surged last month after reports linking Vimpelcom with a potential takeover emerged in the Italian press. Sawiris told a press conference this week: ‘We are completely open to integrating with all three companies you mention. We have [an] appetite to grow our business. We believe there [are] synergies, but until there is something concrete we cannot say anything more than that. There is nothing concrete right now’.