Telstra sale still to go ahead; contracts vendors for upgrade

17 Nov 2005

According to the Australian government, plans for the sale of its 51.8% stake in Telstra are still on track, despite a 7% fall in the telco’s share price this week. The government said it hopes to raise AUD5.25 a share from the sale; the stake is worth around AUD26 billion (USD19 billion). The sharp fall in share price is the biggest since 2001 and was sparked by a strategic review of the company’s operations earlier in the week.

Meanwhile Telstra has contracted Alcatel, Cisco and Ericsson to upgrade its IP and 3G networks. Alcatel will build its IP and 3G networks under an AUD3.5 billion deal, while Ericsson and Cisco will build its IP core under contracts worth around AUD1 billion each. Telstra said it will invest over AUD5 billion in its mobile networks in total, and plans to combine its three networks into a single 3G network within three years.