Qatar-listed Ooredoo is reportedly eyeing ‘as much as 30%’ of the mobile market in Indonesia after it completes a merger involving its Indosat Ooredoo subsidiary and CK Hutchison Holdings’ Hutchison 3 Indonesia (Tri) unit. According to Bloomberg, which cites Ooredoo’s managing director Aziz Aluthman Fakhroo, the talks are ‘ongoing’ and both sides are now ‘awaiting regulatory approvals’ with the official confident that a deal can be brokered ‘by the end of this year’.
As previously reported by CommsUpdate, in January this year Ooredoo and CK Hutchison entered into talks to merge their Indonesian units to allow them to better compete with larger players such as state-backed Telkomsel and Axiata-controlled XL Axiata. The two companies entered into an exclusive non-legally binding memorandum of understanding (MoU), which is valid until 30 April 2021. At the time, the Qatar-based parent confirmed the development stating that it was ‘in the early stages of assessing the merits of such a potential transaction’, while CK Hutchison released a separate statement outlining that the potential transaction ‘is subject to due diligence, agreement on terms, signing of definitive agreements and obtaining all required corporate and regulatory approvals’.
TeleGeography notes that Indonesia recently passed a new law simplifying doing business and allowing spectrum sharing between telcos – a move designed to stimulate consolidation in the market – which the government considers is needed ‘to support telco companies [as they] prepare their investment for the initial deployment of 5G in Indonesia’.