Private equity firms Apax Partners and Bain Capital are both said to be weighing bids for Portugal Telecom (PT), the Financial Times has reported, putting pressure on Luxembourg-based telecoms group Altice, which reportedly entered into preliminary discussions regarding a potential takeover earlier this month. PT’s ongoing merger with Brazilian telecoms giant Oi SA was thrown into doubt recently, when Oi SA CEO Zeinal Bava – the architect of the elaborate tie-up – resigned amid speculation that the long-gestating shareholder pact would be unravelled. While Oi SA has confirmed that non-core assets including cell towers, real estate and its interest in the Africatel unit are up for sale, company officials are adamant that they want to hang on to PT, which has been valued at EUR7 billion (USD8.8 billion).
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