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Iliad to be fourth mobile network operator in Italy

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Staff Writer | July 6, 2016
France's Iliad has agreed to acquire the remedy package put together by CK Hutchison Holdings and VimpelCom to address regulatory concerns over the merger of their Italian businesses.
Communications   Nationwide coverage in Italy
Buying the assets would allow Iliad to create a fourth mobile network in the country with nationwide coverage.

"The agreement is a unique opportunity for the Iliad Group to enter the Italian telecoms market," Iliad said, adding that its plan is "to capitalize on the experience it has acquired in France with the successful launch of a fourth mobile network operator in 2012."

Iliad, which beat a rival bid from another Italian operator, Fastweb, owned by Swisscom didn't provide an overall value for the deal, which also includes infrastructure assets.

CK Hutchison and VimpelCom last year agreed to form a new equally owned joint venture that would house their two Italian businesses and create a mobile operator in the country with more than 31 million subscribers.

But the European Commission, the bloc's antitrust authority, said it had concerns the deal could lead to increased prices and reduced choice for customers in Italy and opened a formal probe into the merger in March.