Telecom Italia Buys Stake in Brazilian Net Co.

ROME (06/01/2000) - Telecom Italia SpA today signed an agreement to purchase 30 percent of the share capital with voting rights of, the Internet company of the Brazilian publishing and media group Organizacoes Globo, the Italian incumbent telecommunications operator announced.

Telecom Italia will pay US$810 million for the stake in a deal valuing at US$2.7 billion, Telecom Italia said in a prepared statement. is a horizontal portal serving the world's Portuguese speaking community and with exclusive rights to the Globo Group's television, radio and print content, the statement said., which is aimed primarily at Brazilians, was launched on March 26, it said.

As part of a strategic agreement between the two companies, Telecom Italia and Organizacoes Globo plan to establish a pan-regional company serving the world's Spanish-language community in collaboration with other important access and content providers, the statement said.

They also intend to supply Internet services to cellular phone customers in Brazil using WAP (Wireless Application Protocol) technology via a partnership between and the cellular operators controlled by Telecom Italia Mobile (TIM) SpA, the Italian carrier's mobile phone subsidiary, it said. TIM currently has more than 3 million subscribers in the Latin American country, the statement said.

"This alliance, which links one of the world's leading telecommunications companies with the biggest media group and producer of high quality content in Latin America, is destined to revolutionize the panorama of the new economy on the Latin American continent," said Roberto Irineu Marinho, vice president of Globo Organizacoes, in a prepared statement.

Telecom Italia's investment in marks the beginning of a partnership with Latin America's biggest multimedia company and the world's leading Portuguese language content provider, Telecom Italia's chairman and CEO Roberto Colaninno said in a statement.

Some details of today's accord were leaked to the Italian newsweekly L'Espresso three weeks ago and partially confirmed by Colaninno at the time.

Telecom Italia can be contacted in Rome at +3906-3688-2066 or on the World Wide Web at

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