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Wind in play

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A veteran Italian businessmen is considering an offer for Wind, the Italian telco.

Wind is the third largest mobile operator in Italy, with a 16 per cent market share, and the country's largest Internet Service Provider.

Cesare Romiti, former chief executive of Fiat, heads a consortium which is interested in buying the firm. The 81 year-old will make his move next week, according to the Financial Times. He says is interested in buying the whole group but will also discuss possible partnerships.

Wind is owned by utility group Enel, which last month rejected a bid by Romiti. At the time Enel said the undisclosed offer - thought to be around €5bn - was unacceptable.

Enel is known to be interested in getting out of the telco market either by selling Wind or floating it on the stock market. Deutsche Telecom and France Telecom helped Enel set up the firm in 1997, but both subsequently sold their stakes.

The Italian telco market is already undergoing a shakeup with Telecom Italia's decision this week to buy out the remaining shares in its mobile division. ®

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