Swiss fixed line incumbent and the nation’s largest telco by subscribers Swisscom has CHF1.6 billion-CHF1.7 billion (USD1.81 billion-USD1.93 billion) available for acquisitions in Switzerland and Italy – where the group owns broadband service provider Fastweb – the company’s chief financial officer, Mario Rossi told German paper Boersen-Zeitung. The official explained that the Swiss government, which holds a majority stake in the telco, had set a net debt ceiling of 2.2 times EBITDA, although Rossi said that no major takeovers were on the group’s radar: ‘When we talk about M&A (mergers and acquisitions) at Swisscom we look at two countries mainly: Switzerland and Italy. Smaller companies, especially IT service providers come into consideration.’ The CFO also dismissed speculation that Swisscom was considering selling Fastweb, explaining that the subsidiary should make a positive contribution to Swisscom’s cash flow by 2015, adding that Italy had past the worst of its economic problems: ‘We’ve reached the trough and therefore can expect some tailwind from the economy.’
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