Telecom Egypt (TE) has agreed to sell up to 4.9% of mobile operator Vodafone Egypt to fellow investor Vodafone Group, in a deal which will give the UK-based wireless giant full management control of the cellco. The share sale is part of a wide ranging strategic business partnership struck by the pair that ensures Vodafone Egypt will work in tandem with TE as its fixed line partner. ‘This move will make it possible for Vodafone Egypt to take advantage of the products and services from [ISP subsidiary] TE Data and other parts of TE as well as increasing the opportunities for Vodafone Egypt to sell its services through TE,’ Akil Beshir, Chairman and CEO of TE, said in a statement. ‘This agreement will allow TE to maintain a substantial portion of the international voice services volumes from Vodafone Egypt after the liberalisation of international gateway services in Egypt,’ he added.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms database, TE acquired a further 23.47% stake in Vodafone Egypt from minority shareholders for EGP5.63 billion (USD1.03 billion) under a tender offer launched in September 2006. Upon completion of the deals, TE’s holding in the cellco rose from 25.5% to 48.97%. Vodafone Group holds approximately 50.1%. Under the latest agreement, Vodafone will launch a new tender offer, which if fully accepted will see its stake in Vodafone Egypt rising to 55%, whilst diluting TE’s holding to 45%, for a maximum possible consideration of EGP1.18 billion.