Home > Business & Strategy, Technology & Telecom > Etisalat interested in Vivendi’s Maroc Telecom stake

Etisalat interested in Vivendi’s Maroc Telecom stake

January 22, 2013 Leave a comment Go to comments

UAE operator becomes latest to submit expression of interest in Vivendi’s Moroccan telco shares.

Abu Dhabi-based Etisalat said on Thursday it is interested in acquiring French conglomerate Vivendi SA’s 53% stake in Morocco’s Maroc Telecom.

Etisalat, which operates in 18 markets across the Middle East, North Africa and Asia, has submitted a preliminary expression of interest in the Maroc Telecom stake and is one of a number of bidders, according to a statement posted on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange website.

“Should there be any developments on this subject, we will keep the stock market updated in due course,” Etisalat said.

Click here to find out more!Vivendi SA has been looking to sell its 53% stake in Maroc Telecom since last summer, as part of a broader strategic shift of the company away from telecommunications and its media and content assets. The Paris-based conglomerate company is currently also auctioning off its Brazilian phone and broadband unit GVT. Vivendi hopes to get at least one of the deals nailed down before its annual meeting in April, according to people familiar with the sales processes.

Etisalat’s preliminary expression of interest comes as several other companies are kicking the tires of the African cellphone operator. Korean operator KT Corp. said in December that it had submitted a letter of intent for a potential purchase. France Telecom SA and others have also expressed interest a potential bid for the company, the people familiar with the sales processes said.

France Telecom chief executive Stéphane Richard confirmed the company’s interest in a press conference on Monday, but said the company was “not prepared to fight for Maroc Telecom at any price.”

A Qatar Telecom spokesman said the company has also submitted a non-binding initial bid.

In October, Ahmad Julfar, Etisalat’s group’s chief executive officer told Zawya Dow Jones that “following the global crisis there are good opportunities in the market. In the next 18 months we will be eyeing the opportunities and jumping on the good ones. If it brings good value, we’ll look into that.”

Etisalat, which is facing strong competition in its home market from rival Du, has looked to its international operations to boost revenues. In the third-quarter, while consolidated revenues remained flat at AED8 billion, Etisalat said revenue from its international operations rose 7% to AED2.4 billion–contributing 30% to the top line.

Originally posted at: http://www.totaltele.com/view.aspx?ID=478846&G=2&C=5&Page=0

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