Italian utility group Enel has said it is in no hurry to sell its stake in domestic wholesale network operator Open Fiber. Enel currently holds a 50% interest in the operator, with state lender Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (CDP) owning the remainder. Telecom Italia (TIM) is currently discussing a possible merger of Open Fiber and its own broadband network operations to create a nationwide fibre network business. Meanwhile, it has invited bids from investment funds who could come on board to help finance the deal. Reuters quotes Enel CEO Francesco Starace as saying: ‘We are not in a hurry … There is no tendency to walk out of the Open Fiber joint venture … it needs serious consideration.’
TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database notes that Open Fiber is deploying fibre-based networks in 271 Italian cities, allowing third-party service providers to offer connectivity at up to 1Gbps. In addition, it is rolling out infrastructure in rural regions under a series of state-subsidised contracts to cover digital divide areas.