American Samoa lawsuit resolved; Blue Sky ahead for troubled merger?

19 Jan 2018

A USD20 million lawsuit brought by former BlueSky Pacific CEO Adolfo Montenegro against Spanish telecoms company Amper has been resolved, the Samoa Observer reports. In May 2017 Mr Montenegro accused Amper of fraudulently orchestrating a bidding war for the sale of BlueSky Pacific Group, allegedly deceiving Fiji-based buyer Amalgamated Telecom Holdings (ATH) in the process. It was alleged that Amper caused BlueSky to abruptly terminate Montenegro’s management contract on the same day in September 2016 that Amper signed a sales agreement with ATH (see below).

In a formal statement, Amper’s executive chairman, Clemente Fernandez Gonzalez, commented: ‘After nearly a decade of exemplary service, we want to thank former CEO Adolfo Montenegro for his work leading the growth of BlueSky across the Pacific and culminating in this transaction, which will see BlueSky reach new heights under ATH’s stewardship.’ The statement does not provide the details of the financial settlement.

According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, on 30 August 2016 ATH announced that Amper had accepted its FJD163 million (USD79.2 million) binding offer for the sale of all of Amper’s interests in the South Pacific – comprising units in Samoa, American Samoa and the Cook Islands. ATH went on to execute a ‘deed of sale’ on 23 September 2016, and while all other elements of the deal have since been concluded, the American Samoa component of the transaction has been delayed by the ongoing legal action.

American Samoa, Amalgamated Telecom Holdings (ATH), American Samoa Telecom (BlueSky Communications), Amper