Copel Telecom, Sercomtel drop opposition to Oi Movel sale

11 Feb 2022

Brazilian regional operators Copel Telecom and Sercomtel – both of which are owned by Bordeaux Fundo de Investimentos – have published a joint press release confirming that they will no longer oppose the planned sale of Oi Movel to a consortium comprising TIM Brasil, Telefonica Brasil (Vivo) and Claro Brasil. The companies had exerted pressure on the authorities to block the BRL16.5 billion (USD3.25 billion) sale, but have withdrawn their opposition after the deal was given the green-light by the Administrative Council for Economic Defence (Conselho Administrativo de Defesa Economica, CADE) earlier this week. The statement notes: ‘We respect CADE’s decision. We will not take any legal action … This is a moment of respect and acceptance.’

Copel and Sercomtel were keen to snap up any assets forcibly divested due to antitrust concerns, but the sale of radio frequencies has been omitted from the remedies established by CADE. That said, the acquisitive parties will be obliged to make surplus 900MHz spectrum available to any interested regional operators on a wholesale basis. In addition, it has been suggested that certain cell sites will need to be divested. Copel and Sercomtel have conceded that the measures are satisfactory – providing they are complied with.

In other news, the planned rebranding of Copel Telecom has been delayed until March 2022. The process was originally scheduled to conclude by the end of January, as per a timeline agreed with the telco’s former owner, Parana-based state power company Companhia Paranaense de Energia (Copel). The delay has been blamed on pandemic-related issues. In order to select a new name, the telco will put two as-yet-unknown names to a public vote; the vote is expected to take place later this month.

Brazil, Ligga Telecom (formerly Copel Telecom), Oi, Sercomtel