True, DTAC boards approve merger arrangement

21 Feb 2022

Thai telecoms operators True Corp and DTAC reported on 18 February that their respective boards have approved the merger of their businesses to create a new listed telecoms and tech company. Pending regulatory approval, the next stage of the merger process will involve a voluntary tender offer to allocate shares in the new company (‘NewCo’) to the shareholders of True and DTAC, in accordance with the following ratios: one existing share in True to 0.60018 shares in NewCo; and one existing share in DTAC to 6.13444 shares in NewCo.

TeleGeography notes that DTAC and True Corp first agreed to merge their operations in November 2021. The initial merger plan was approved by their respective executive boards on 19 November, with the duo inking a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on 22 November for an equal partnership to form a new merged firm which will apply to be listed on the Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET). The deal is worth an estimated USD8.6 billion. Thai agribusiness conglomerate Charoen Pokphand (CP) Group currently controls True Corp, while Norwegian telco Telenor is DTAC’s existing largest shareholder.

The companies’ latest announcement states that: ‘The amalgamation primarily aims to restructure the business of [DTAC and True] and to further develop their telecommunications business operations to become a genuine “technology company” to meet the challenges of the fast-paced market disruptions and to enhance competitiveness through development and upgrading of network performance. While the telecommunications business will remain a key business of NewCo, further business development will be technology-oriented which will support the digital transformation of Thailand, in line with Thailand 4.0, to create know-how on science, technology and innovation, and the nation’s economic development for better competitiveness in the digital industrial sectors. The amalgamation also intends to further develop NewCo business through artificial intelligence, cloud technology, smart devices, smart cities, and patronage of start-ups in Thailand.’

Thailand, Digital Total Access Communication (DTAC), Telenor Group, True Corp