Rogers Communications Inc has paid $1.37bn in cash to AT&T Wireless for its 34% interest in their joint venture Rogers Wireless Communications Inc, Canada’s second largest mobile phone operator.
The two companies said the deal would have no impact on their customers’ ability to roam on the two networks. After the deal, Rogers will own all the Rogers Wireless class A shares and 80.9% of the class B shares, but said it has no intention of buying any additional class B shares.
The deal could open up the way for Rogers Wireless to launch a bid for Microcell Telecommunications Inc, which is faced with an unwelcome $843m offer from Telus Corp, a Vancouver, Canada-based carrier.
AT&T Wireless, which is in the progress of being acquired by Cingular Wireless, regards the Rogers stake as non-core to its operation.