TeliaSonera to Buy 49% Stake in Kcell for $1.52B
Thursday 22 December 2011
(Bloomberg) – TeliaSonera AB (TLSN), Sweden’s largest telephone company, will take over its Kazakh business for $1.52 billion before holding an initial public offering for the unit as it seeks to reduce dependence on saturated home markets.
TeliaSonera, which owns 51% of GSM Kazakhstan LLP through a venture with Turkcell Iletisim Hizmetleri AS, agreed to buy the remainder from Kazakhtelecom, the Central Asian nation’s fixed-line phone monopoly. It plans to sell a 25% holding of the operator in an initial public offering next year, TeliaSonera said today.
TeliaSonera has cut jobs and trimmed expenses in Sweden and Finland as subscribers shift from fixed-line subscriptions to smartphones, and focused on faster growing regions. Tero Kivisaari, the company’s president for central Asia, said June 14 it aims to keep revenue growth in the area in double digits even as long-term growth may slow as markets like Azerbaijian and Kazakhstan near 100% mobile penetration.
Kcell is one of the three licensed GSM mobile network operators in Kazakhstan. Beeline and Tele2 are the other license holders. It is operated by GSM Kazakhstan LLP. GSM Kazakhstan was established in 1998. K-Cell has 7.5 million subscribers. GSM Kazakhstan is owned by:
- 51% : Fintur Holdings B.V. (owners TeliaSonera 58.55% and Turkcell 41.45%)
- 49% : KazakhTelecom JSC