Iliad ventures Vodafone Italy bid
Bloomberg cited sources as stating Iliad submitted an offer to Vodafone’s board last week, meaning a merger could be on the cards between Italy’s third and fourth largest telcos.
Iliad first entered the Italian market in 2018 following the merger of Wind and CK Hutchison’s Three Italy which created WindTre. The Paris-based firm also runs telecoms companies in its home country, as well as Ireland and Poland.
Bloomberg also reports that, should a bid for Vodafone fail, Iliad will look at other options in Italy, according to Benedetto Levi who heads up its Italian unit.
It comes at a time when Vodafone is under pressure from activist investment firm Cevian Capital to engage in more consolidation. Cevian recently increased its stake in the UK-based telecoms giant, and is believed to have pushed the idea of a board level shakeup and a focus on M&A.
Vodafone has indicated that it has been eyeing up several potential mergers as it guns for more consolidation in the sprawling European telecoms market, with group CEO Nick Read telling investors last week that the firm was in talks in “multiple markets.”
The UK, Spain, Italy, and Portugal were the primary targets for potential mergers, Read said last week.
The bid follows news that Telecom Italia – the incumbent in Italy – is facing a takeover bid from US investment group KKR. The bid, believed to be valued at €11 billion, would take TIM private, with rival investment companies CVC Capital Partners and Advent International also linked to a potential buyout.
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