Vinaphone, MobiFone set to merge

20 Mar 2012

State-run national PTO Vietnam Posts and Telecommunications Group (VNPT) is to merge its two wholly owned mobile network operators, Vinaphone and MobiFone, as part of a restructuring process, Reuters reports, citing senior industry officials quoted in local daily Tuoi Tre. The merger, which would create Vietnam’s largest wireless service provider with over 50% of the market’s roughly 134 million subscribers, has been approved by the Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC), but still requires the approval of Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung, according to VNPT deputy general director Lam Hoang Vinh. The decision to merge the two cellcos follows the introduction of new government guidelines last year that stipulate that an institution or individual that owns more than 20% of the charter capital or stake in one telecoms operator, may not hold more than 20% of another firm operating in the same market.