Appliance maker Teco Electronics Group (東元) may link up with third-generation (3G) license-holder Yuan-Ze Telecom Co (遠致電信) to offer high-speed mobile Internet services, a Chinese-language newspaper reported yesterday.
Teco -- together with Cathay Life Insurance Co (國泰人壽) and First International Computer (大眾電腦) -- may purchase up to 20 percent of Yuan-Ze, according to the report.
Yuan-Ze is a subsidiary of the nation's third-largest wireless operator, Far EasTone Telecommunication Co (
A Far EasTone official, who requested anonymity, said several rounds of talks have been held with Teco.
Taiwan issued five 3G licenses last month, raking in NT$48.9 billion in fees. Winning licenses were Taiwan Cellular Corp (
Teco, which had bid on a 3G license, dropped out of the auction after 180 rounds.
The company isn't new to the wireless market. Teco owns roughly 70 percent of the nation's fifth largest mobile operator, Mobitai Communications Corp (
Far Eastern Textile Co (遠東紡織), Far EasTone's parent group, owns about 4 percent of Mobitai. Other shareholders include Cathay Life, First International Computer and Japan Telecom.
Meanwhile, under government rules, the five 3G license-holders will be required to pay at least 30 percent of their winning bid by Monday.
According to the Directorate General of Telecommunications, Yuan-Ze and Chunghwa plan to pay the full amount of their bid price in order to avoid bank interest charges.
Taiwan Cellular, Asia Pacific Broadband and Taiwan PCS Network plan to pay the remaining 70 percent in June.
Chinese-language media reports also say Taiwan Cellular may have a merger in the works. Industry insiders speculate that the target is KG Telecommunications Co (
"It's a win-win deal between Taiwan Cellular and KG Telecom," said Tung Chia-chung (