The Romanian government has confirmed that it has hired a consultant to assist with the sale of its 45.99% stake in RomTelecom. While a listing on local stock exchange, Bursa de Valori Bucuresti (BVB), has been suggested as the most likely option, the state has not ruled out a larger stake sale to a strategic investor. Shares are expected to be valued at RON10 (USD3) each.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, the latest development represents the government’s third attempt to fully privatise RomTelecom, which is co-owned by Greek telco OTE, since August 2005. Most recently, in November 2010 the state approached OTE with a view to buying out its minority shareholding. However, in June 2011 OTE confirmed that it had opted not to purchase the stake, citing ‘the continuation of the economic crisis in the region and in Greece’. OTE reportedly baulked at the EUR1 billion (USD1.32 billion) price-tag.