By Christina Pellegrini Financial Post
Shaw Communications Inc. said late Wednesday that it has acquired upstart wireless carrier Wind Mobile Corp. in a transaction worth $1.6 billion, ushering in a new era of fiercer competition in Canadian telecom.
A cable company based in Calgary, Shaw now adds wireless services to a suite of offerings that includes TV, Internet and home phone, bolstering its ability to compete against regional rival Telus Corp.
For Toronto-based Wind, this deal solidifies the new entrant’s viability – in the near term, at least – as Canada’s fourth national provider.
“Consumers can expect Wind and Shaw to be around a long time. You can expect great value and choice,” Brad Shaw, chief executive at Shaw, said in a phone interview. “If we decided to say, okay, Quebecor, we’re going to buy your spectrum and we’re going to build out, well, that’s two or three years for us to build out. Lots can happen in the competitive world in that time.”