Aquilinis reported to be in multi-billion dollar race to buy Canada’s fourth largest mobile service provider

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Vancouver’s Aquilini family are interested in buying Freedom Mobile from Rogers Communications, according to the Financial Post.

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Freedom is the fourth largest cellphone plan provider in Canada behind Koodo (owned by Telus), Virgin (owned by Bell) and Fido (owned by Rogers).

The company was founded by Toronto-based Globalive in 2008 as Wind Mobile and sold in 2016 to Shaw Communications for $1.6 billion and renamed Freedom.

It is on the market after Rogers Communications announced it had struck a deal to buy Shaw Communications for $20 billion, and the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission would not support it unless Freedom was sold.

This was to avoid Rogers holding too much of Canada’s mobile network market. The deal is expected to go through in June.

Anthony Lacavera, founder and president of Globalive, told Postmedia News on Monday that he wanted the federal government to watch the Freedom sale transaction closely. Globalive is reported to have offered $3.75 billion for Freedom.

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He said the sale process at this point was a “sham” and suggested that Rogers was seeking a buyer that would serve Rogers shareholders’ interests rather than boosting competition in the sector.

Aquilini Investments own businesses in the construction, farming, energy and entertainment industries – including the Vancouver Canucks.

A call has been placed with Aquilini Investments.

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