Vodafone Idea plans to raise Rs 250 billion through a rights issue (India)
Vodafone Idea Limited is planning to raise Rs 250 billion through a rights issue to existing eligible equity shareholders. In this regard, the promoter shareholders, the Vodafone Group and the Aditya Birla Group, intend to contribute up to Rs 110 billion and Rs 72.5 billion respectively. In case the rights issue is under-subscribed, each of the promoter shareholders would reserve the right to subscribe to a part or whole of the unsubscribed portion. The funds raised through the rights issue will be used to meet the company’s capex and to pare debt.
Bharti Airtel to raise Rs 320 billion through a mix of bonds and a rights issue
Bharti Airtel’s board has approved its plans to raise funds of up to Rs 320 billion through a rights issue of up to Rs 250 billion and perpetual bonds with equity credit up to $1 billion (Rs 70 billion). The rights issue, as cleared by the board, entails a price of Rs 220 per fully paid equity share (a premium of Rs 215 per fully paid equity share over a face value of Rs 5 per share), and a rights entitlement ratio of 19 shares for every 67 shares held by eligible shareholders. The perpetual bond will be denominated in foreign currency and will be subject to price, market conditions and other terms and conditions as acceptable. It will also be subject to conditions allowing for full accounting equity credit. The funds raised will be used by the company to pare its net consolidated debt.
Hutch Lanka and BoI sign $115 million supplementary agreement (Sri Lanka)
Hutchison Telecommunications Lanka (Hutch Lanka) has signed an agreement with Sri Lanka’s Board of Investments (BoI) to invest $115 million on the nationwide roll-out of its 4G network. Hutch recently launched 4G services in Sri Lanka’s Western Province and now plans to make these services available in other parts of the country as well. The company is the third 4G operator in the country after Sri Lanka Telecom and Mobitel to launch a nationwide service roll-out. CK Hutchison’s subsidiary, Hutch Lanka, has been operating in the Sri Lankan market for over two decades and recently merged with Etisalat Lanka.
IFC announces $15 million investment in Telecom Comores (Comores)
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, has announced its first investment in Comoros by lending $15 million to Telecom Comores S.A. (Telco SA). The funds will help transform the country’s mobile market, which is amongst the least developed telecom markets in Africa and globally. The funding will help Telco SA compete in a previously monopolised sector. Telco SA provides nationwide wireless services using 2G, 3G and 4G technologies under a global and unified licence. For IFC, this marks the latest addition to its telecom portfolio in emerging markets, which includes Millicom (Chad), GrameenPhone (Bangladesh), Telecom Argentina (Argentina) and Otecel (Ecuador).
Government agrees on the restructuring of Gamtel and Gamcel (Gambia)
Gambia’s cabinet of ministers has agreed that state-backed telco, Gamtel, and its mobile subsidiary, Gamcel, will be restructured and shares in Gamcel will subsequently be divested. As per the restructuring plan, Gamcel will operate under an independent management, free from Gamtel’s control and influence, while Gamtel will be restructured and repositioned in order to make it more effective and efficient.
Konnectivity takes a majority control in M1 (Singapore)
Konnectivity, a company jointly owned by Singapore Press Holdings and Singaporean conglomerate Keppel Corporation, has secured majority control of city-state fixed and mobile operator M1 Limited. The move comes after the Axiata Group (through its wholly owned subsidiary Axiata Investments [Singapore]) accepted a voluntary conditional general cash offer for its entire 28.6 per cent stake in M1 for $404.5 million. Konnectivity and its concert parties now hold 75.5 per cent of the maximum potential issued share capital of M1.
Telkom Kenya and Airtel Kenya merge operations (Kenya)
Telkom Kenya and Airtel Kenya have announced the signing of an agreement to merge their mobile, enterprise and carrier services businesses to operate under a joint venture company to be known as Airtel-Telkom. While the final shareholding will be determined at the closing of the transaction, Telkom Kenya has the option of holding up to 49 per cent of the combined entity. The merged entity is set to pose serious competition to market leader Safaricom. Airtel and Telkom have stated that the two brands, as well as their respective products and solutions, will continue to co-exist, and service delivery will continue to operate as usual. Telkom is 60 per cent owned by Helios Investment Partners, with the remainder held by the Kenyan government. India’s Bharti Airtel is the 100 per cent shareholder of Airtel Kenya. The finalisation and closure of the transaction is subject to approval by the relevant authorities.