Axiata to hold off on M&A activity in near term

10 Oct 2019

Malaysia’s Axiata Group has said it will hold off from undertaking any mergers or acquisitions in the near term, according to Bloomberg. It is understood that the decision was made at a board meeting last week and comes after a proposed tie-up with Norwegian telecoms giant Telenor Group fell through last month. Citing unnamed sources with knowledge of the situation, the report indicates that Axiata will not look to proceed to formal negotiations for any approach for either its wireless tower business, which has been valued at around USD3 billion, or its Indonesian telecoms operations before at least before the end of the year. Instead, it has been suggested that Axiata will focus on delivering on its goals of profitability and cash generation.

Consolidation is, however, said to remain important to the company’s growth strategy in some markets, with a response regarding the matter from an Axiata representative stating: ‘We wish to stress we are not compelled to secure deals but are cognizant that the process of consolidation takes up to a year to conclude and another two to three years to reap its synergies … Therefore, discussions on potential strategic partnerships should begin now.’

Malaysia, Axiata, XL Axiata