Wind Mobile will soon have a new face for the New Year.
The wireless carrier announced Friday that co-founder, chairman and CEO Anthony Lacavera will be transferring his shares to partner Orascom Telecom Holding S.A.E. and stepping down from the compny once the deal has closed.
Lacavera, who will remain in a non-operational capacity as honourary chair, plans to launch a new initiative, Globalive Capital, later in the year.
“As an entrepreneur, my vision was to ignite change across the wireless landscape in Canada, bringing more competition, better prices and superior service to Canadians,” said Lacavera, in a statement. “And that is exactly what we did. Now that I am confident Wind Mobile Canada is on a course for long-term success, I can focus on launching Globalive Capital to make targeted investments in companies that share my entrepreneurial vision and continue to support innovation through new and emerging entrepreneurs.”
Lacavera founded Wind Mobile in 2008, and partnered with Orascom to participate in the 2008 wireless spectrum auction. After the agreement closes, Orascom will own an indirect 99.3 per cent interest in Wind Mobile’s parent company.
“Anthony Lacavera has been the face and the voice of Wind Mobile Canada,” said Ahmed Abou Doma, CEO of Orascom, in a statement. “I wish to pay tribute to his leadership in making Wind Mobile the official alternative to the ‘Big Three’ incumbents in Canada.”
The deal, which will require regulatory approval, was made possible by changes to the Telecommunications Act included in the 2012 federal omnibus budget. The amendments removed restrictions on foreign ownership of telecommunications carriers below a certain size.
The company’s ownership structure had already drawn attention in 2009 when the federal cabinet overturned a CRTC ruling that its effective control by a foreign company, despite a majority of voting shares being help by Canadians, violated foreign ownership restrictions.