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Telecom Italia to sell Argentina unit, towers in new strategy

08
Nov
2013

By Danilo Masoni and Leila Abboud MILAN/PARIS (Reuters) – Telecom Italia will sell its Argentina unit and other assets while issuing a convertible bond, aiming to raise around 4 billion euros ($5.3 billion) to stave off a credit rating downgrade and strengthen operations in Italy and Brazil. Italy’s biggest telecoms operator, which is in the middle of a strategy shift under new Chief Executive Marco Patuano, said it had received an unsolicited offer for its 22.7 percent stake in Telecom Argentina and planned to sell. Argentine newspapers Clarin and La Nacion said late on Thursday that the buyer would be investment fund Fintech, which already holds shares in Telecom Italia’s Argentine unit. Telecom Italia also plans to sell and lease back more than 17,000 mobile towers it owns in Italy and Brazil, and unload an Italian digital broadcasting unit, aiming to reap more than 2 billion euros from these deals.

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