Rostelecom linked with Scartel bid; Scartel deny talks

6 Jan 2011

Russian long-distance operator Rostelecom has reportedly entered into talks to acquire a minor stake in WiMAX operator Scartel, Russian daily Vedomosti reports, citing two insiders familiar with the transaction. One of the sources cited by the paper said that the talks were initiated by state-run industrial conglomerate Rostekhnologii, which reportedly controls 25% of Scartel, whilst the other source claimed that Rostelecom made an initial offer to Scartel. According to the sources, a stake of anywhere between 5% and 20% is up for grabs. However, Scartel shareholder Sergei Adonyev dismissed the acquisition speculation as inaccurate. Local press reports have suggested that Rostelecom may be keen to secure Scartel’s 4G frequencies to replace its own Long Term Evolution (LTE)-suitable spectrum, which may or may not be revoked by the State Committee for Radio Frequency Allocations (SCRFA) pending upcoming trials by controversial Ministry of Defence-owned firm Osnova Telekom.

Russia, Rostelecom, Scartel (Yota)