WIND Mobile Had Talks with Quebecor, But No “Plans for Any Deal” Happening

Earlier today Globalive Capital (owned by WIND Mobile CEO Anthony Lacavera) acquired a majority stake in WIND Mobile by buying out the Canadian stake of Netherlands-based VimpelCom, in a $285 million deal, backed by a consortium of investors. News of the deal first broke yesterday afternoon.

Canadian and U.S. firms which include Toronto-based hedge fund West Face Capital Inc., California-based private-equity firm Tennenbaum Capital Partners, LLC, LG Capital Investors, Novus Wireless Communications and Serruya Private Equity, all have an investment in WIND Mobile.

In an interview with The Financial Post, Lacavera clarified the company’s vision now that it controls its own destiny with a new 98.7% voting majority, no longer restricted by VimpelCom’s former 66.68% majority control, which pulled WIND out of the 700MHz spectrum auction at the last minute.

“We’ve had a great deal of difficulty with VimpelCom and this is a resolution for that situation,” Mr. Lacavera said in an interview. “The viability of our company is assured with this deal. It’s business as usual.”

Mr. Lacavera said that while Wind does not have the capacity to directly challenge the three main incumbents, his company offers customers in British Columbia, Ontario and [Alberta] “good value for the money even though we’re not the cheapest in the market.”

In regards to earlier rumours WIND Mobile was in talks with Quebecor for a merger, Lacavera confirmed talks were in place. But in the near future, he reaffirmed “there is no deal or plans for any deal.” I guess that nixes any hopes for both companies working together—but hey, things can always change, right?

Lacavera continued with “We don’t have a closed door view of a potential future deal but today, it’s business as usual.”

With a new spectrum auction in 2015 set for AWS-3 airwaves, expect WIND Mobile to get more capacity to expand its network. But of course, the carrier, with just under 750,000 subscribers, has a lot of work ahead of itself to make a deep impact on incumbent carriers.