BT sells off some of its Latin America assets to pare down Global unit

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BT sells off some of its operations and infrastructure across 16 Latin America countries as part of an effort to whittle down its Global business unit. (Pixabay)

BT has shed some of its domestic operations and infrastructure in 16 Latin America countries as part of an overhaul of its Global business unit. BT has sold those assets to CIH Telecommunications Americas, but said the two companies agreed not to disclose the purchase price of the deal that was struck this month.

The divestment by BT included two fiber networks with a total length of 650 kilometers, 2,000 kilometers of leased fiber lines, four data centers and five teleports. Those assets generated around $129.6 million in revenue in the 2018-2019 fiscal year. The divested business is now headquartered in São Paulo, Brazil.

Despite the selloff of those Latin American assets, BT still plans on doing business in that region. BT and CIH entered into wholesale and reseller agreements that enables CIH to act as a regional channel for BT’s products and services while continuing to supply domestic connectivity services to BT.

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RELATED: BT sells off Spanish assets to Portobello Capital as it pares down international assets

BT has been in the process of whittling down its Global division, which was called Global Services before a name change last year, in order to focus on higher margin access deals to support its large multi-national customers. As part of that process, BT sold its Spanish fiber networks and data centers to private equity group Portobello Capital in December.

“Today’s announcement is a key milestone in the execution of our strategy to become a more agile and focused business. It comes at a particularly challenging time for the global economy," said BT's Bas Burger, CEO of Global. "As such, it is a sign of our determination to keep the business moving forward and continue connecting communities, businesses and governments."

BT is the U.K.'s largest fixed network and biggest mobile operator with a history that dates back to 1846. BT endured an accounting scandal in 2017 in its Global Services division in Italy that led to a $10 billion decline in its market value at the time. 

RELATED: BT picks Juniper Networks to help build out its converged network

As part of its effort to streamline and update its network operations, BT announced last year that it had picked Juniper Networks and other vendors to build out its converged network. The converged network, which BT calls Network Cloud, rolls BT's fixed, video, mobile and Wi-Fi services and applications onto one platform.

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