Brazil: Vivo invests US$ 3.5 billion to buy Telemig and other operators

10 April 2008

Belo Horizonte, Brazil, 10 April – Telecoms operator Vivo, in which Portugal Telecom and Spain’s Telefonica hold equal shareholdings, will invest 6.07 billion reais (US$ 3.5 billion) this year, CEO Roberto Lima, said Wednesday.

Lima said the “exceptional” investment, three times more than made last year, will be used to in payments to purchase Telemig Celular and the licenses acquired last year, as well as implementation of networks.

The Iberian operator invested 2.7 billion reais to acquire Telemig in August last year and in payments to minority shareholders.

Vivo’s buy-in marked the beginning of its operation in Minas Gerais state, with the third biggest state economy and second largest mobile market after Sao Paulo.

With its latest acquisition, Vivo has 38 million customers representing 31 percent of total market share. Vivo operates over an area including 84 percent of Brazil’s population and accounting for 93 percent of national GDP. It is also the biggest telecoms operator in the southern hemisphere and among the world’s top 15.

Vivo was awarded licenses last December to operate in six states in northeastern Brazil to compete its coverage of national territory. (macauhub)