Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Iliad's Italian aspirations; Telenor targets IoT entrepreneurs; Deutsche Telekom promotes guilt-free mobile streaming.
UK altnet CityFibre has got investors excited with what is being interpreted as a hint that a sale of the company to fund its expansion could be on the cards. As the Financial Times reports, shares in CityFibre rose 12% following a company statement saying that it "consistently reviews, with its advisers, all of its opportunities and how to finance them in the most efficient way." Over the past couple of years, CityFbire has been seeking to challenge BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA)'s dominance of the fiber infrastructure market, regularly trumpeting its latest "Gigabit City" makeover. (See Eurobites: CityFibre Forges Ahead and CityFibre's Gigabit Vision.)
French operator Iliad (Euronext: ILD) has plans to repeat its domestic success in Italy, with aspirations to get its hands on a quarter of the mobile market there, according to a Reuters report. The maverick boss of Iliad, Xavier Niel, apparently believes the market share is ripe for the taking because Italian mobile operators are the "most hated" in Europe. Iliad became Italy's fourth mobile operator in a deal that paved the way for 3 Italia to merge with VimpelCom's Wind Telecomunicazioni SpA. (See Eurobites: Iliad Spies Italian Opportunity and Italian Fear of Iliad May Be Overblown.)
Telenor Group (Nasdaq: TELN) has launched a multi-city pilot initiative that it hopes will support Norwegian entrepreneurs looking to make hay in the Internet of Things (IoT) sphere. Under the scheme, Telenor will provide free access to its low-power, wide-area (LPWA) experimental network and provide development kits to startups, students and developers for testing and experimentation purposes over a five-year period. The operator says that other network technologies such as NB-IoT may also be included in the project in due course.
Deutsche Telekom AG (NYSE: DT) is to allow customers on its MagentaMobile tariffs to stream audio and video content while on the move, without eating into their data allowance. The operator has struck deals with several streamed content providers for the StreamOn service, Apple Music, Napster and Amazon Music Unlimited among them. Spotify, however, does not appear on the list.
Telia Company has received approval from the Norwegian competition authority for its proposed acquisition of smaller rival Phonero. Telia hopes that the acquisition will boost its presence in Norway's enterprise sector. Phonero's customers will be transferred to Telia's network during the second half of 2017.
Swiss mobile operator Salt SA has upgraded several of its existing antennas and connected up newly built sites to its national network. Some areas, such as that close to the transport museum in Lucerne and Zurich's Seefeld district, have been upgraded to what Salt describes as 4G+ technology.
— Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading