Idea buys Videocon’s spectrum in two circles (India)

Idea Cellular has ac­­qu­ired Videocon Telecommunications’ spectrum in the Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh (West) circles for Rs 33.1 billion. Idea will use this newly acquired spectrum in the 1800 MHz band to roll out 4G services over the next few months. As part of the deal, it will also take over Videocon’s outstanding deferred payment liability worth Rs 4.82 billion, which is payable to the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) for the two circles. However, this payment will be deducted from the final payment to be made to Videocon. The transaction will be effective only after the completion of due diligence and clearance from DoT.

Foxconn acquires 10 per cent stake in MoMagic Technologies

Wonderful Stars Pte Limited, a subsidiary of Taiwan-based equipment vendor Fox­conn International Holdings, has acquired a 10 per cent stake in Delhi-based Mo­Magic Technologies. Foxconn’s acquisition is a part of its commitment to actively collaborate with technology companies in India in order to create a positive industry ecosystem for greater innovation and business opportunities.

STC to increase its stake in Viva Kuwait (Kuwait)

The Saudi Telecom Company (STC) has submitted an offer to Kuwait’s Capital Markets Authority (CMA) for buying all the shares of Viva, a Kuwait-based telecom company. The purchase will be funded through the company’s internal resources. STC is currently awaiting the CMA’s approval. While STC has a 26 per cent stake in Viva, the remaining is held by the Kuwaiti government (24 per cent) and the Kuwaiti public (50 per cent).

Orange to sell stake in Telkom Kenya to Helios (Kenya)

The Orange Group has decided to sell its entire 70 per cent stake in Telkom Kenya to Africa-based private equity company Helios Investment Partners. The announcement comes after an attempt to sell Orange’s majority shareholding in Telkom Kenya to the Viettel Group did not materialise in 2014. The Vietnam-based operator was reported to have withdrawn from the deal after the Kenyan government – which owns the remaining 30 per cent stake in Telkom – rejected certain conditions of the deal. The transaction is subject to approval from the relevant authorities.

Globe secures loans of PhP 7 billion from Metrobank (Philippines)

The Metropolitan Bank and Trust Com­pany (Metrobank) has extended loans worth PhP 7 billion to Globe Telecom. These include a 10-year loan facility worth PhP 5 billion and another seven-year loan facility worth PhP 2.12 billion. The operator will use the loan proceeds to finance its capital expenditure for network expansion. Globe has already allocated $800 million for its capital expenditure in 2016.

Mobilink and Warid merge operations (Pakistan)

Pakistan-based mobile operators Mobilink and Warid Telecom have merged their operations. The combined entity will now serve over 45 million customers in the country. The two oper­ators are awaiting the necessary approval from the local regulatory authorities. While Mobilink is owned by international mobile operators VimpelCom and Global Telecom Holdings (GTH), Warid Telecom is controlled by the Dhabi Group. The board of the new company will consist of seven directors, of whom six will be nominated by Vimpel­Com and GTH and one by the shareholders of the Dhabi Group. Under the terms of the agreement, Mobilink will initially buy all the shares of Warid Telecom. The Dhabi Group shareholders will then acquire a 15 per cent stake in Mobilink. Following the completion of the transaction, the parties will merge Warid with Mobilink.

Axiata issues $500 million Islamic bond (Malaysia)

Axiata Group Berhad has issued a $500 million Islamic bond. The sukuk, issued through the operator’s wholly owned unit Axiata SPV2 Berhad, marks the second issue under a multi-currency issu­ance programme with an aggregate nomin­al value of $1.5 billion. The five-year $500 million sukuk carries an annual profit rate of 3.466 per cent. It has attracted Islamic and conventional investors ranging from asset management companies to sovereign wealth funds, with participation from more than 170 accounts. The bond has been assigned ratings of Baa2 and BBB by Moody’s Investors Service and Standard & Poor’s respectively. CIMB and Deutsche Bank AG, Singapore, are the joint arrangers and dealers of the sukuk programme, as well as joint lead managers and bookrunners for the issuance.

Bangladesh signs deal for its first communications satellite (Bangladesh)

Bangladesh has signed a $250 million deal with French-Italian firm Thales Alenia Space to build the country’s first communications satellite. Thales Alenia Space will launch the satellite, called Bangabandhu-1, for the Bangladesh Telecommunications Regulatory Commission in 2017. The deal will save the Bangladesh government about $14 million annually on renting transponders on foreign satellites. Early this year, Bangladesh bought a satellite orbital slot from Russian company Intersputnik Inter­national for $28 million.