Swedish telecoms group Telia Company today announced that it has agreed to sell its entire 60% controlling stake in Tajikistan mobile operator Tcell to its existing local shareholding partner Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development (AKFED) for USD39 million, based on the cellco’s enterprise value of USD66 million. Johan Dennelind, Telia Company’s CEO, stated: ‘The divestment of our holding in Tcell is in line with our ambition to reduce our presence in Eurasia and increase focus on our operations in the Nordics and Baltics. AKFED has been a significant shareholder in Tcell since inception, and I am convinced that they will be able to further develop the company.’ Telia Company added that it has, together with external risk consultants, conducted due diligence and background checks of the parties involved in the transaction.
AKFED, based in Switzerland, is part of the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) and works in partnership with international organisations and governments in private sector ventures focused on developing economies, with the aim of ‘generating capital for investment in sustainable development initiatives’. AKFED is an established investor in the wider region with multiple companies in its current portfolio.