French mobile operator Iliad will launch its Italian operations by the summer, CEO Benedetto Levi told daily newspaper la Repubblica. The executive said: ‘Our objective has always been to land by this summer, with the Iliad brand … The idea is to distance ourselves from (traditional operators). We will do everything in a different and better way, with tariffs that will be cheaper and more transparent, without neglecting quality.’ Levi said that Iliad would have national coverage from the start, though this will be achieved by using Wind Tre’s network in some parts of the country initially.
TeleGeography notes that the firm had been expected to make its debut in late 2017 or early 2018, but the launch has been put back due to delays in the process of installing a management team, though Levi noted that more than 100 people have now been hired. Iliad agreed to acquire a package of spectrum and mobile infrastructure from Wind and 3 Italia in 2016 to clear the way for their merger which took place at the end of the year; to appease regulatory concerns that the tie-up would reduce the Italian cellular market from four to three players, the merging parties sold assets to Iliad in a EUR450 million (USD530 million) transaction.