Telekom Srbija submits offer for IPKO

26 Jun 2020

Serbian state-owned operator Telekom Srbija has entered a bid for Slovenian-owned Kosovar full-service provider IPKO, SeeNews writes. Pristina’s mayor, Shpend Ahmeti, announced yesterday via social media that the telco had entered the highest bid for IPKO with an offer of EUR155 million (USD174 million). The official argued that the but the bid should be rejected, however, citing a previous case that had seen Belgrade block the acquisition of a Serbian bank by an Albanian businessman. A source at Telekom Srbija confirmed that the company had entered a non-binding bid for IPKO but, due to the terms of a non-disclosure agreement could not provide any further information until the tender is closed. Telekom Slovenije began the process of selling its 100% stake in IPKO – Kosovo’s largest ISP by subscribers, and second-placed mobile provider – in July 2019. As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, Telekom Srbija is keen to expand its operational footprint in the region, but its status as a state-owned venture has previously hindered its efforts. The company had submitted an offer for Telekom Albania in late 2018 and, whilst the bid was ultimately unsuccessful, the Albanian government had expressed concern that a foreign government could potentially gain control of strategic infrastructure in Albania. The Albanian government noted at the time that it had little say in the matter directly, as the state had no stake in the telco.

Kosovo, IPKO, Telekom Slovenije (incl. Mobitel), Telekom Srbija (MTS)