Malaysia’s Axiata Group has entered into an agreement to sell a 10% stake in its Cambodian unit Smart Axiata to Japanese business group Mitsui and its affiliate. Following the conclusion of the transaction, which is expected by the end of this month, Axiata will continue to hold a controlling and majority interest in Smart of 82.5%. Under the agreement, Axiata has also granted Mitsui a call option to acquire an additional 10% interest, exercisable within twelve months from the completion of the deal. The total consideration of USD66 million is based on an equity value of USD724 million after factoring additional cash received from dividends as part of the transaction structure.
‘Axiata’s interest and investment in Cambodia started in 1998, with Smart now being a phenomenal contributor to the Group,’ commented Axiata’s president and CEO Tan Sri Jamaludin Ibrahim, adding: ‘This strategic partnership with Mitsui will support the growth efforts of Smart, particularly in the areas of digital services and IoT and our vision of becoming a New Generation Digital Champion. With Mitsui in the fold, Smart will be in a position to offer enhanced digital services that would leapfrog Cambodia’s digital economy. We look forward to leveraging on synergies from this strategic partnership.’