RAI Way has suitor


ROME -- Italian state broadcaster RAI has already attracted one potential bidder in its unexpected move to shop around its signal transmission and broadcasting network subsidiary RAI Way, RAI officials said Thursday

DMT Digital Multimedia Technologies announced earlier in the day that it is interested in acquiring RAI Way for between €600 million ($786 million) and €1 billion ($1.31 billion). RAI confirmed that it had been contacted, but it did not confirm the estimate for RAI Way's value.

The broadcaster's interest in selling off RAI Way is an about-face for the company, which has not spun off a major part of itself since 2003. More importantly, such a deal could have an impact on RAI's plans to divide itself into three separate companies by 2009.

Under the terms of that plan, one company would run RAI's commercial network, one would run two noncommercial networks, and the third would run the networks' broadcast infrastructure. If it were still part of RAI at that point, RAI Way would be part of that third company.