US-based operator NII Holdings, which provides wireless services under the brand Nextel in a number of Latin American markets, is close to selling its Argentine and Chilean units to two Argentine businessmen for around USD250 million. Local newspaper Clarin cites sources close to the negotiations as saying that Matias Garfunkel and Sergio Szpolski, owners of media group Grupo Veintitres, plan to make an offer for the two Nextel units this week in partnership with US investors. TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database notes that NII agreed to sell its operations in Peru to Entel Chile for around USD400 million in April 2013, allowing the firm to refocus its capital and resources primarily in its core markets of Mexico and Brazil, which it says offer the greatest opportunity for strong, long-term returns. A key component of its long-term strategy is the deployment of 3G W-CDMA networks, which NII says will enable it to expand and improve its competitive service offering.
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