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BSE faces sale to unidentified parties

Bnamericas Published: Tuesday, January 21, 2003
Shareholders of Brazilian Band-B mobile operator BSE are in negotiations with an undisclosed party to sell off their interests in the company, BSE said in a statement late Monday. Also known as BCP Nordeste, BSE is a sister company to Sao Paulo mobile operator BCP. Both are controlled by Bellsouth (NYSE: BLS) and Verbier Communications, a unit of local Banco Safra. Local media have long singled out Telecom Americas, controlled by Mexico's America Movil (NYSE: AMX), as buying its way into Sao Paulo through BCP. However, there is no indication that BCP is affected by the BSE talks. BCP was effectively orphaned in March 2002, when BellSouth and Safra let the company default on debt of US$375mn. After BCP missed a US$1.6mn interest payment in April, the company's creditors took control of its cash management.

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