3 Nov 2014
Ukraine’s largest mobile and fibre broadband operator Kyivstar has finally completed the long process of consolidation with its integrated legacy fixed, broadband and mobile division Golden Telecom, reports Ukrainian News. As from 1 November 2014 Kyivstar is responsible for all contracts and payments pertaining to Golden Telecom. The announcement represents one of the final stages of a multi-phased reorganisation which involved Russian-backed parent Vimpelcom taking 100% ownership of its three Ukrainian units Kyivstar, Ukrainian Radio Systems (URS) and Golden Telecom. Kyivstar’s director of regulatory and legal support Andrew Osadchuk said: ‘All the activities of the business consolidation of three Ukrainian companies are held [by Vimpelcom] in ‘clear, full and strict compliance with the requirements of the legislation of Ukraine,’ adding that it was an ‘extremely difficult, lengthy process… What we have achieved as of November 2014 [is] a great result.’
TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database records that Vimpelcom bought URS in November 2005, while it consolidated Golden Telecom (Ukraine) in February 2008 when it acquired the remaining shares it did not already own to give it 100% of the two Beeline-branded Ukrainian units. Following the merger of larger Ukrainian cellco Kyivstar into Vimpelcom, which received Ukrainian anti-monopoly approval in October 2010, the twin Beeline Ukraine subsidiaries were integrated with Kyivstar. 100% direct ownership of the URS unit was transferred to Kyivstar in October 2012, and a final merger of URS into Kyivstar was approved by shareholders in April 2013. URS officially ceased operating as an entity in its own right on 30 August 2013 and its mobile and fixed network operating licences were cancelled in October 2013. Meanwhile, Golden Telecom finally relinquished its 039 mobile network numbering code in September 2013, but the unit remained present in the fixed network arena, as the regulator extended Golden Telecom’s fixed line services licence in August 2014.