The government of Kyrgyzstan will auction 100% of its shares in Alfa Telecom (Megacom) – the country’s largest mobile operator by subscribers – on 11 May 2016, according to the country’s Fund for State Property Management. The deadline for applications is 10am on 10 May, while the bidders will be announced at 11am the same day, and the Fund notes a starting price for the tender has been set at KGS19 billion (USD781 million).
As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, in July 2014 the Kyrgyzstan state increased its shareholding in Megacom from 49% to 100%. Prior to this, in May 2010 a 49% stake in the company was transferred to the government after it was claimed that the cellco was owned by Maxim Bakiyev, the son of ousted president Kurmanbek Bakiyev. The remaining 51% stake remained under investigation, with a Bishkek court subsequently ruling that the shares also be handed to the state.