Wind Mobile going foreign
TORONTO—Small Canadian wireless player Wind Mobile has signed a deal with a global telecom company to be fully foreign-owned and controlled.
Wind Mobile chairman and CEO Anthony Lacavera said the agreement is with VimpelCom subsidiary Orascom, already an owner and original financial backer of Wind.
Lacavera said if the deal goes ahead, Wind Mobile will be the first carrier to be foreign-owned and controlled in Canada under the new rules.
He added he’ll still have an economic stake in Wind Mobile and will stay on until the deal closes, but plans to start a venture capital company focused on telecom, technology, and media.
Wind Mobile now has 600,000 subscribers.
It launched in late 2009 after a cabinet order overturned a CRTC ruling which said the company wasn’t Canadian-owned or controlled at the time due to foreign investment.
Canada’s largest telecom companies—Rogers, Bell, and Telus—have more than 24 million wireless customers combined.