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Vodafone to seal $960m Ghana deal this week

01 июля 2008

Vodafone will become the new owner of Ghana Telecom by 2 July, having reportedly concluded negotiations with the Ghanaian government to acquire a 66.7% in the telco, according to the local press.

The mobile giant held exclusive talks with Ghana's Inter-Ministerial Committee to broker a $960 million deal, the country's Peace FM radio station revealed on its Website late last week, citing an unnamed source at the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning.

Meanwhile, speaking to the press last week, Anthony Akoto-Osei, minister of state at the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, revealed that negotiations surrounding the privatisation of Ghana Telecom are due to come to a close by the end of June.
The sale of the Ghanaian incumbent has been on the cards since last year.

The minister also dismissed concerns that potential investors have been put off by the privatisation process because of the price.

Separately, communications minister Benjamin Aggrey Ntim went on record as saying that the telco's new owner would be announced this week, adding that Vodafone was the only firm left in the running.

The Ghana Telecom privatisation looked set to be resolved earlier this year, with France Telecom widely seen as the front runner to buy into the telco at the start of 2008.
However, the state rejected the French operator's offer, as well as bids from Vodacom and Portugal Telecom on the grounds they were under-valued. According to Peace FM, the government stepped in with a new asking price of $1 billion, although Vodafone's offer is believed to fall just below that sum.

Regulations governing the privatisation state that Ghana Telecom's new owner must commit to tripling the telco's current mobile subscriber base within three years and undertake fixed-line network capacity increases, the report added.

Ghana Telecom's wholly-owned GSM provider Onetouch had a customer base of 1.4 million at the end of Q1 2008, while Ghana Telecom's fixed-line network comprises around 360,000 connections.

Источник: Total Telecom

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