Euronews: Did AT&T Prep Telefónica Bid?

AT&T Inc., Telefónica SA and TeliaSonera AB start the week's trawl of the EMEA headlines.

  • Rumors of a potential €70 billion (US$93.4 billion) takeover of Telefónica by AT&T sent the Spanish operator's shares northwards by 3.9 percent Monday morning, reports Bloomberg. Spanish newspaper El Mundo said AT&T had made an approach to the Spanish giant, but this was denied by a Telefónica spokeswoman.

  • Nordic operator TeliaSonera has appointed a new CEO in the shape of former Vodacom man Johan Dennelind, following the resignation of Lars Nyberg. Nyberg stepped down in the wake of an investigation into TeliaSonera's dealings in Uzbekistan. (See TeliaSonera Appoints New CEO and Euronews: TeliaSonera CEO Quits.)

  • At last, some good news for Orange CEO Stephane Richard: After last week being held for 48 hours by police and apparently being hung out to dry by French digital economy minister Fleur Pellerin, Richard will after all receive backing from state representatives at today's executive board meeting, reports Reuters, citing various French media.

  • We're all for food similes here at Euronews Towers, and Neelie Kroes, the European Commission's vice president for the Digital Agenda, will be delivering a good 'un today if she sticks to her script. In her latest tub-thump regarding a prospective single European telecom market, Kroes says: "Currently the spectrum map of Europe is so uncoordinated, it looks like a plate of spaghetti! Only at least spaghetti is rich in fiber!" Don't forget the parmesan shavings, Neelie! (See Euronews: 'Single Market' Plan Rolls Into Action.)

  • An industry collaboration led by T-Systems International GmbH and Alcatel-Lucent has demonstrated long-distance real-time data center interaction across 400Gbit/s connections. The demonstration, details of which can be found in this hard-to-follow press release, was unveiled at the International Supercomputing Conference in Leipzig, Germany.

  • Qatari operator Ooredoo has pulled its bid for Vivendi's 53 percent stake in Maroc Telecom, reports Reuters, leaving rival Etisalat as the front-runner. (See Euronews: Bidding War for Maroc Telecom Stake.)

  • Following news earlier this month that the Saudi authorities had banned the use of Viber, the Web-based "free calls" app, Reuters reports that they now have Viber rival WhatsApp in their sights.

  • Good news for operators thinking of investing in Sudan: Reuters reports that the war-torn African country's government has decided to scrap a 30 percent tax on the profits of operators, replacing it with a more tolerable 2.5 percent levy on total income.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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