Russian national operator Rostelecom could potentially cede control of its mobile business after its anticipated tie-up with VTB Group’s Tele2 Russia unit, according to the banking group’s chairman. Andrey Kostin told Bloomberg : ‘As far as I remember, Tele2 Russia assets are valued higher [than Rostelecom’s mobile assets]. I can’t tell whether Rostelecom will get 40% or 49%’. As such, an independent appraisal is needed, he added
VTB acquired Tele2 Russia from Sweden’s Tele2 Group in April 2013 for USD3.55 billion, including debt, and is currently weighing a joint venture with Rostelecom’s mobile assets to form a nationwide operator. In addition, Tele2 Russia is reportedly considering ‘M&A activities’ by the end of this year, although no potential targets have been outlined.