China Mobile eyes Brazilian mobile operator Oi

22 September 2017

China Mobile, the world’s largest mobile operator with 874 million customers, has been negotiating with the Brazilian National Telecommunications Agency (ANATEL) for the possible purchase of Brazilian telecoms operator Oi, Brazilian magazine Exame wrote.

At the end of 2016, Oi, the largest telecommunications company in Brazil, had a portfolio of 63.6 million customers, of which 39.9 million in mobile telephony, 16.4 million in fixed telephony, Internet access and subscriptions, 6.6 million users in the corporate segment and 700,000 public telephones.

On 20 June, 2016, Oi filed a request for receivership, the largest in Brazil’s history, with a liability of 65 billion reais (US$20.7 billion).

Exame also reported that the potential acquisition of Oi by China Mobile would be the “ideal solution” for Anatel, and the advisors of this public institution held meetings with executives of the Chinese state-owned company to discuss investments in Brazil, including the troubled Brazilian operator, which is 27% owned by Portuguese company Pharol.

The Chinese company last week opened an office in São Paulo that will be the business centre of the telecommunications company in Latin America, according to company officials.

Juarez Quadros, president of Anatel, met with the Chinese company and the China Development Bank on 11 September in Brasília, and the Brazilian magazine confirmed that Oi was the subject of the talks. (macauhub)