Japan's merging telecoms firms to spin off mobile operations
Japan's second largest telecoms firm, due to be created in October, will spin off its mobile phone operations to battle the giant mobile phone carrier NTT DoCoMo Inc., a report said Monday.
The three firms, -- KDD Corp., DDI Corp. and IDO Corp.-- will separate the trio's respective cellular phone businesses as early as late 2001, the Nihon Keizai Shimbun reported, quoting industry sources.
The mobile phone operations, including the mobile phone operator IDO, will be then consolidated under the new company "au," the leading business daily said.
The firms planned to list "au" shares by the end of fiscal 2002 in a bid to raise funds of some one trillion yen ($9.3 billion) needed for the launch of next-generation mobile phone services, it said.
The move was designed to challenge the enormous 58.1 percent market share held by Japan's largest mobile phone operator NTT DoCoMo, the newspaper said.
The trio's market share currently stands at 18.7 percent.
The new mobile phone company was set to start providing its more advanced cellular phone services in late 2002 in major Japanese cities including Tokyo and the western city of Osaka.
The services would expand to the rest of the country within two to three years, the Nihon Keizai said. — (AFP)
© Agence France Presse 2000
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