LISBON, July 14 (Reuters) - Dutch-based Altice, which agreed to buy Portugal’s Media Capital, the owner of TVI television channel, from Spain’s Prisa in a 440 million euro deal, wants to keep growing in the Iberian country where it already owns the largest telecom operator, PT.
Altice CEO Michel Combes declined to comment on recent criticism of PT’s 2015 privatisation by Prime Minister Antonio Costa who said he was concerned that Altice would break up and sell parts of the telecom, which could lead to mass layoffs.
But he and PT CEO Paulo Neves told a news conference in Lisbon no layoffs were underway and his remarks on growth appeared to dismiss any plans to break up the former monopoly, which he called “the country’s best asset”.
“We are not laying off people at PT... We have no intention to lay off workers at Media Capital. It’s all about growing business, that’s where we are going to concentrate our efforts,” he said, explaining that both PT and Media Capital will be part of Altice’s “industrial project” to grow digital platforms and content. (Reporting By Patricia Rua, writing by Andrei Khalip)