Vietnam’s military-run telecoms operator Viettel is reportedly in the process of raising funds for prospective deals in a number of French-speaking West African countries, TMT Finance cites several sources as saying. The company is aiming to acquire spectrum from existing operators through merger and acquisition deals, and create synergies through local partnerships, the report adds. Potential targets could include Lebanese-owned Comium Telecom, Sudatel-backed Expresso Telecom and BinTel, according to the sources. Amid slowing growth of its domestic mobile operations, the Hanoi-based company has significantly widened its international footprint in recent years, placing a particular focus on emerging markets, which it claims has helped it to become one of the fastest growing telecoms operators in the world, notes TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database. Outside of Vietnam, Viettel has launched services in neighbouring Cambodia (via its wholly owned Metfone unit) and Laos (Unitel, in which it holds a 49% stake), as well as further afield in Haiti (Natcom, 60%) and Mozambique (via majority owned unit Movitel), and the group has also secured telecoms licences in Peru, Timor-Leste and Cameroon.