As holiday weeks go, the end of 2016 was pretty quiet in telecom and internet infrastructure. Here's a quick look at some news from around the world worth noting:
Just as the holidays began, there was some international data center M&A that I didn't note at the time. London-based Global Switch has sold a 49% stake to a Chinese consortium led by Li Qiang in a £2.4 deal. The consortium, called Elegant Jubilee, includes the largest steel company in China, equity funds run by Ping An and Essence Financial, and the joint venture AVIC Trust. Along with the deal, Global Switch announced customer pre-commitments with China Telecom Global in Hong Kong and Daily Tech in Singapore for new data centers in each city.
Liberty Global and Vodafone have sealed their deal in the Netherlands. They now own a 50/50 joint venture that pairs the former's Ziggo fiber network business with the latter's mobile presence with a combined revenue base of some $4.2B. The deal was originally announced back in February of 2016 and has been working its way through regulators since.
Argentina's regulators are looking to boost competition in the country's telecommunications sector. They have lifted regulations preventing companies from providing cable TV, internet, fixed line, and mobile simultaneously. The traditional telephony players Telefonica, Telecom Argentina, and Claro won't be allowed to offer TV until 2018, however, leaving the field open for cable operators in the near term.
And in Mexico, the country's new wholesale wireless project, won by the Altan Consortium two months ago, is embroiled in a growing dispute. Rivada Networks is unhappy about its exclusion from the project, and has been very vocal about it, threatening a court challenge. The Mexican Government is now threatening to sue both Rivada and its CEO, Declan Ganley, alleging defamation.
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