Singtel interested in buying MobiFone shares

Friday, Aug 19, 2016 18:15

The Singapore-based communication group Singtel has expressed interest in buying shares of mobile network operator MobiFone when the Vietnamese firm is equitised. — Photo

HA NOI (Biz Hub) — Singtel Group has expressed its interest in becoming the strategic partner of MobiFone when the Vietnamese telecommunication company is equitised.

The Vietnamese operator has performed efficiently and owns a high ratio of market share, Vice President, Business Development and Centre of Excellence Programme Office at Singtel Oliver Foo, said at a meeting on August 19 between the Singapore-based firm and the Ministry of Information and Communications.

The two mobile network operators have co-operated in some projects before, Oliver said, and added that Viet Nam is a market that has developed significantly with high population and potential.

Singtel always looks for opportunities in the Asian and Southeast Asian markets as the company feels a similarity in the geography and culture will help improve its business, he said.

Pham Hong Hai, deputy minister of information and communications, highly appreciated Singtel's interest to buy stake in MobiFone.

However, it will take a long time before MobiFone completes its equitisation due to the firm's large business scale, which needs to be fully evaluated, he said.

The government completed evaluating MobiFone at the end of June 2015, thus, the company must sell its first shares at the end of this year. However, if the prime minister rejected the year-end selling plan, MobiFone needs to be re-evaluated and it will take the firm another six months to complete the re-evaluation.

"Singtel needs to work with MobiFone on the equitisation plan. After MobiFone completes the plan and selects the strategic partners, MIC will submit the plan to the government for consideration," Hai said.

Singtel started out as a state-owned enterprise and was equitised in 1993. The Singaporean communication firm is present in 23 markets, including Thailand, Indonesia, Australia and India.

Beside Singtel, other foreign companies have also expressed their interest in buying shares of MobiFone such as the Australian Telstra, the Swedish Comviq and the Norwegian Telenor. — VNS

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