Brazilian operator Telefonica (Vivo), part of the Telefonica Group, has selected Huawei Technologies and Ericsson of Sweden as key vendors for the rollout of its 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) network in Brazil. Under the plan, the Swedish manufacturer will be responsible for the core 4G network and the access network in the north and mid-west, and the states of Sao Paulo, Minas Gerais and Bahia. Meanwhile, its Chinese counterpart will provide infrastructure in the cities of Fortaleza, Recife and Rio de Janeiro, as well as the south and northeast (excepting Bahia) and the state of Rio de Janeiro.
In a separate development, Telefonica says it is looking to raise up to EUR6 billion (USD7.8 billion) by listing shares in its LatAm operations in Madrid and London as part of ongoing efforts to trim group debt which currently stands at almost EUR53 billion. The Madrid group’s CFO for Brazil, Gilmar Camurra, said the initial public offering (IPO) will include all of Telefonica’s operations in the region, and will take place as soon as possible, according to Bloomberg. ‘This is an alternative for the company’s plans to improve our financial position and give us flexibility,’ he said, adding that Telefonica is looking to raise between EUR4 billion and EUR6 billion by selling 10%-15% of its Latin American operation. The LatAm region now generates almost halve of the group’s revenues and is estimated to be worth EUR40 billion. Once the IPO is completed though, the parent says it does not intend to alter the shareholding structure of Telefonica (Vivo).