Telecom Italia recently awarded BNP Paribas and West LB the mandate to structure a possible E4 billion ($3.8 billion) securitization program and to underwrite the first issue. If the project is successful, TI would be the first European telecoms company to try its hand in the asset-backed market.

West LB's participation for the project was already a certainty after it lent Olivetti - now TI's parent company - E2 billion to enable it to make its E22 billion acquisition of TI in March last year. Competition for the other mandate was fierce and Paribas beat off the challenge of banks that were said to include Morgan Stanley Dean Witter, Salomon Smith Barney and Merrill Lynch, among others.

Subscribe Now

Access to a full range of industry content, analysis and expert commentary.

30-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Access coverage of the securitization marketplace, including breaking news updated throughout the day.