TeliaSonera ups Ncell, Applifone stakes; awaiting Cambodian consolidation approval

6 Dec 2010

TeliaSonera has reportedly increased its ownership in Netherlands-registered TeliaSonera Asia Holding from 51% to 75.45% for a consideration of SEK1.1 billion (USD160 million), in turn increasing its respective indirect holdings in Nepali and Cambodian cellcos Ncell and Applifone (Star-Cell). TeliaSonera Asia Holding itself owns 80% of Ncell and 100% of Applifone, and following the deal TeliaSonera increases its indirect ownership in Ncell from 40.8% to 60.4%, as well as acquiring a right option to further increase its ownership in Ncell to 72.9% if certain conditions are met.

Meanwhile in Cambodia, Applifone will combine its operations with those of Latelz Co and its Smart Mobile brand to become a bigger player in the domestic mobile market. Upon receiving necessary approval from the Cambodian authorities, the enlarged operation will offer services under the Smart Mobile brand and will become a strong operator in the market with more than 850,000 mobile subscribers. TeliaSonera Asia Holding will own 25% of the new company.

Cambodia, Nepal, Applifone (Star-Cell), Ncell Axiata, Smart Axiata, Telia Company