Vittorio Colao, chief executive officer of UK-based mobile giant Vodafone Group, has revealed that despite speculation that the South African government is planning to sell its 13.9% stake in Vodacom to fund energy utility Eskom, he has had no discussions with government leaders on the subject, BusinessTech reports. However, the executive reportedly hinted that his company is open to talks with the South African government regarding a proposed sale. ‘I personally haven’t had any discussion on that topic … We are happy where we are. We are happy with the current situation. Having said that we would be open to discussions’, the executive was cited as saying.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, Vodacom South Africa is a 93.75%-owned subsidiary of Vodacom Group, which is itself owned by Vodafone Group (65%) and the South African government (13.9%), with the remaining shares distributed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE). In February 2015 it emerged that the South African government was reportedly looking into selling its stake in Vodacom, which is estimated to be worth ZAR28 billion (USD2.44 billion), in a bid to raise much needed funds to address the country’s power crisis.