Telecom Italia eyeing sale of mobile unit - report

Telecom Italia is working on a restructuring plan that includes the spin off and sale of all or a part of its mobile unit Telecom Italia Mobile, which can be worth about 35 billion euros, a Dow Jones report, quoting sources, said.

The report said the move was part of a new strategic plan to re-design Telecom Italia as a broadband media, telephony and content provider through a content deal currently being negotiated with News Corp.

Telecom Italia chairman Marco Tronchetti Provera and News Corp.'s Rupert Murdoch met earlier this week in ongoing talks for a content agreement that would see News Corp. supply films, entertainment and sports to Telecom Italia's broadband portal, the Dow Jones report said.
The report quoted a source as saying that "Tronchetti Provera will inform the board of his intention to spin off and sell Telecom Italia Mobile in order to concentrate on the delivery of content by broadband."

According to the report, the source also said that Telecom Italia's advisors began contacting "several US private equity funds" in late July about a possible purchase of Telecom Italia Mobile.