Quebecor, the parent of Canadian quadruple-play operator Videotron, has expressed its interest in bidding for the assets of financially struggling cellco Mobilicity, according to a research note released yesterday by Bank of Nova Scotia analyst Jeff Fan, cited by the Globe & Mail newspaper. The analyst said that Quebecor has signed a non-disclosure agreement with Mobilicity ahead of Canada’s 700MHz 4G auction which commenced yesterday ‘which indicates [Quebecor] has some interest in licences outside Quebec’ [where Videotron is almost exclusively based, and leads the province’s cable broadband market]. Mobilicity is currently operating under court-sanctioned creditor protection whilst seeking a buyer for some or all of its business. After larger cellular rival Telus had two attempted takeovers of Mobilicity blocked by the government’s spectrum transfer policy, Wind Mobile – a fellow market entrant via Canada’s 2008 AWS auction – was the next company to publicly express an interest in buying Mobilicity (via a statement from its CEO), but this now looks unlikely after Wind’s main financial backer Vimpelcom refused to finance any bids in the 700MHz licence auction. Quebecor/Videotron or Mobilicity have not confirmed or denied the latest takeover bid report.
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