In today’s industry news, we got some interesting stories. Telefónica, a big player in the telecom world, might be looking to sell a stake in its Telefónica Tech division to private equity investors. This division, valued at around €2 billion, offers cloud, cybersecurity, IoT, and AI services to enterprise customers. It’s been growing fast, with revenues up 39.6% in the first half of this year. Telefónica might be considering this sale to reduce its high net debt of €27.5 billion and to meet the demands of its new investor, STC Group.
Over in the US, Jessica Rosenworcel, chair of the FCC, is calling for the creation of a body to oversee the security of broadband networks. This move aims to address the lack of authority currently held by any federal agency to monitor or address broadband outages. The FCC wants to ensure the resilience of these networks and prevent companies controlled by hostile foreign governments from accessing them.
OpenAI, the company behind the generative AI system ChatGPT, is reportedly looking to produce its own AI chips. They are exploring options to tackle the shortage of AI chip supply, including developing their own chips or partnering with chipmakers like Nvidia. OpenAI’s CEO has expressed concerns about the scarcity and high costs associated with GPUs, which are crucial for AI development.
In Denmark, there are talks of a partial or complete sale of TDC Net, the national infrastructure operator. Australian infrastructure investor Macquarie already owns a 50% stake in the company. TDC Net builds and runs fixed and mobile network infrastructure in Denmark, but it’s been facing competition and challenging economics. Revenues have dipped, and profits have decreased by almost 72%. A sale might be in the cards.
Phoenix Tower International (PTI), a mobile network passive infrastructure company, is attracting investor interest. BlackRock and Grain Management are reportedly in advanced talks to acquire a 20% stake in PTI. The deal, valued at around $1.3 billion, would help PTI expand its presence. However, negotiations are still ongoing, and no final decisions have been made.
Orange Poland has signed an agreement with solar power provider R.Power. This deal will provide Orange Poland with over 600 GWh of solar energy from R.Power’s photovoltaic farms, making up 8-10% of its annual consumption. It’s a step towards zero emissions and aligns with Orange Poland’s goal of meeting most of its energy needs from renewable sources by 2025.
Mauritius Telecom, the state-owned telecom operator in Mauritius, is looking to expand into African markets. They are exploring takeover opportunities in countries like Seychelles, Madagascar, the Republic of the Congo, and Ghana. Mauritius Telecom has the necessary resources and financial backing to make these moves. They hope to replicate their success in Mauritius, where they offer 100% fiber-to-the-home coverage, have 1.05 million mobile subscribers (almost the entire population), and nearly 400,000 fixed lines.
And finally, Malaysia has launched its first commercial private 5G network for enterprise use. State energy company Petronas is behind this private network, aiming to improve internal operations and drive industry-wide change. The telecom player involved in this deployment is yet to be revealed.
That’s it for today’s industry news roundup. Stay tuned for more updates.