Altimo, part of Russia’s Alfa Group, has indicated to Reuters that it has no plans to launch a new offer to buy out minority shareholders in Orascom Telecom Holding (OTH) after the Egyptian Financial Supervisory Authority (EFSA) rejected its recent attempt to reopen its failed tender. Last week Orascom shareholders offered to sell 15.9% of the shares listed on the Egyptian stock exchange in response to a USD0.70 per share offer from Altimo’s Cypriot affiliate Baskindale Limited, falling short of the regulator-stipulated 26.6% minimum required for the buyout. Altimo then asked the EFSA to waive the minimum take-up requirement relating to its would-be buyout, but the watchdog rejected the offer. Altimo’s vice president Evgeny Dumalkin told Reuters: ‘EFSA didn’t give us the waiver to reopen tender and permitted only withdrawals so we couldn’t proceed with the offer though we were willing to. At the moment there are no plans to launch a new offer’.
The deal was expected to pave the way for the Vimpelcom Group to effectively take full control of OTH. The Russian backed, Amsterdam-based telecoms giant currently owns a 51.9% stake in OTH via directly held and subsidiary holdings, while Altimo is Vimpelcom’s largest shareholder.