According to Italian communications minister Maurizio Gasparri, there is only room for three GSM mobile operators in Italy. Mr Gasparri says the number of operators could be cut from four to three by the bankruptcy of Italy’s smallest operator Blu – or by breaking up the company, which could save 2,000 jobs.
Blu’s board plans to sell its assets to various mobile companies, including Omnitel and Hutchinson 3G. But Mr Gasparri says that some of the companies that have expressed an interest in purchasing the whole of Blu do not have the abilities to run the company.
Edizion, Blu’s controlling stakeholder, has been urged by competition minister Mario Monti to sell its stake in Blu. It says that the company cannot break up Blu, instead of selling it as a going concern, without the commission’s merger clearance decision being modified.