Telekom Slovenije has halted the sale process for its Kosovar subsidiary IPKO without providing further details. In a brief statement from the group, Telekom Slovenije confirmed that it has ‘halted the sales procedure of its 100% share in the Kosovo-based IPKO Telecommunications … The procedure was concluded without the selection of a buyer and [IPKO] will remain part of Telekom Slovenije Group.’ As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, Telekom Slovenije had seen substantial interest in IPKO, including reports of a controversial offer from Serbian state-owned operator Telekom Srbija. In early October a senior official from telecoms watchdog the Regulatory Authority for Post and Electronic Communications (Autoriteti Rregullator i Komunikimeve Elektronike dhe Postare, ARKEP) briefed parliament on the sale process, stating that the number of entities that had registered their interest in IPKO was in double digits and that Telekom Slovenije could not disclose any more information at that time as the process was ongoing. Parliament had taken a particular interest in the matter due to potential security concerns regarding the sale of critical infrastructure to an entity controlled by a foreign state, especially in light of the strained relationship between Serbia and Kosovo.
Although Telekom Slovenije has offered no explanation for its decision to cancel the sale process, SeeNews cites local newspaper Delo as saying that ‘unofficial information’ indicated that the bids submitted for the company were considered too low.