Turkey’s largest mobile operator by subscribers, Turkcell, has declared that it is looking to appoint a strategic and financial advisor to explore the possibility of full acquisition of subsidiary Fintur (inclusive of mobile operations in Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Georgia and Moldova), in which it currently holds a 41.45% stake. The news is pursuant to TeliaSonera’s announcement that it has initiated a process to reduce, and over time fully exit, its presence in CIS and Asian markets; TeliaSonera is one of Turkcell’s major shareholders and also Turkcell’s partner in Fintur through a 58.55% stake. The jointly-owned cellular operators under consideration are K’cell, Azercell, Geocell and Moldcell in Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Georgia and Moldova respectively.
As reported by CommsUpdate, yesterday TeliaSonera declared that it will exit all seven countries in its ‘Eurasia’ mobile network operating division – Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, Tajikistan, Nepal, Georgia and Moldova – to sharpen its focus on its Sweden and Europe divisions. The strategic decision follows a troubled period in which the group was affected by investigations into corruption allegations in Eurasian markets, exacerbated by tough macroeconomic conditions and price competition across the Eurasia footprint.