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Oi initiates restructure with sale of four units including US$2.9 billion mobile business

Leading Brazillian telco Oi is reportedly looking to split off four of its business units as a means of funding its growing broadband business.

The operator will split off four units – towers, data centres, mobile assets and fibre infrastructure – under bankruptcy protection with a vote expected in August. These units will all be sold either in their entirety or partially.

The mobile unit is set to be the headline sale, with Oi aiming to raise BR$15 billion (US$2.9 billion) from it. Major competitors including TIM Participações SA and Telefonica Brasil SA have stated their interest in Oi’s mobile business. Bidding will commence in Q4 and Oi aims to have the sale completed by the end of 2021.

The towers unit is expected to demand BR$1 billion (US$190 million), and Oi has already received an offer of BR$325 million (US$62 million) for its five data centres.

The money generated by the sale of its units will be used to repay debt and expand its broadband network.

Following the restructure, Oi plans to be left with its fixed line, cable TV and corporate telecoms businesses.

Speaking on a conference call, Oi CEO Rodrigo Abreu said: “With our execution going really well, we can move into the third phase of our transformation plan to pursue our long-term strategy based on fibre.

“Oi has dramatically increased the value of its mobile unit over the last two years. Having a binding offer beforehand would have been ideal, but this is a fair assessment and we had to provide it, otherwise it would be impossible for our creditors to vote on the proposed sale.”