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Eurobites: Danish Snack on Alcatel-Lucent's Small Cells

Paul Rainford

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Cinven acquires Spanish fiber unit; Telefónica tunes up with Dolby; Dailymotion talks stall; yet more Sky sport.

  • Danish operator TDC A/S (Copenhagen: TDC) has chosen Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU)'s small cell technology to bolster its broadband offer, initially for its enterprise customers and then later for residential subscribers. In its press release, AlcaLu stresses how the low energy consumption of small cells and their unobtrusive design are a good fit with Denmark's environmental consciousness.

  • Cinven Ltd. , the London-based private equity group, has won a bidding war to acquire the telecom unit of Spanish utility company Gas Natural Fenosa. The unit boasts fiber infrastructure across Spain and in parts of Latin America. The deal is worth €510 million (US$691 million), according to City AM.

  • Telefónica SA (NYSE: TEF), which has recently agreed to buy pay-TV service Distribuidora de Television Digital, is busy developing a new video streaming service for movies and TV shows, according to this Reuters report. It is believed the service could be launched by the end of the year. Back in the here and now, Telefonica has signed a global agreement with audio specialist Dolby Laboratories for a collaboration that the operator hopes will bring better sound to smartphones -- devices that are being increasingly used to watch and/or listen to content.

  • Orange (NYSE: FTE) has stepped away from talks with Vivendi 's Canal+ over the pay-TV operator taking a stake in Orange's marvelously named Dailymotion video-sharing website. Reuters reports that the two sides could not agree on a long-term strategy for the website's content.

  • CityFibre , the UK infrastructure owner, has raised £30 million ($50 million) through a share offering, reports the Financial Times (subscription required). CityFibre intends to use the funds to roll out its 1Gbit/s services to more than 20 British cities, taking the high-speed broadband fight to BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA). (See Eurobites: BT's Rivals Go Ultrafast in York, CityFibre Raises £16.5M From IPO, and CityFibre Launches 1Gbit/s Business Broadband.)

  • The battle over pay-TV sports content in the UK intensifies as Sky (NYSE, London: SKY) launches yet another sports channel, this one dedicated to European soccer leagues. Sky Sports 5 will screen up to 600 live European football matches next season and will be offered as part of BSkyB's standard sports package. In November, BT hit BSkyB where it hurts by outbidding the satellite broadcaster for the exclusive rights to UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League soccer coverage for three years starting in 2015. (See Confirmed: BT's Got Euroballs.)

  • The Nigerian government is looking for buyers for the assets of Nigerian Telecommunications Ltd. (Nitel) , the state-owned fixed-line operator which it wound up in March after failing to sell it, despite trying for nearly a decade, reports Reuters.

  • SES Broadband Services, the wholly owned subsidiary of satellite operator SES S.A. (Paris: SESG), is to help connect nearly 9,000 under-served French schools via its Astra Connect broadband-via-satellite service. The Ka-band-based solution allows for download speeds of up to 25 Mbit/s.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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