Telenor of Montenegro, Serbia, Hungary and Bulgaria Sold for 2.8 Billion Euro

By , 22 Mar 2018, 10:05 AM Business
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The Telenor group signed a contract with Czech PPF group to sell its business in Central and Eastern Europe for 2,8 billion euro.

The transaction included mobile operations in Hungary, Bulgaria, Montenegro and Serbia and providers for technical services, Telenor Common Operation (TnCo), which are in the ownership of the Telenor group.

Out of the three mobile operators in Montenegro, Telenor has the largest number of customers – 389.309. Its competitors are Montenegrin Telekom and M: tel.

Telenor in Montenegro has owned 100 percent of the shares from the former company Promonte since 2004.

“Today we are entering the new business phase, bearing in mind that our operations in Hungary, Bulgaria, Montenegro and Serbia will be sold to PPF group. For 21 years we have been leading the development of the telecommunication market and succeeded in maintaining the position of the leaders. PPF group has a clear goal in developing a telecommunication portfolio, and Telenor’s business in the region of Central and Eastern Europe is crucial for its achievement. The transaction will not affect our customers and local partners, as we are continuing to provide consistent and qualitative services to our clients," said Sandra Stajner, the general manager of Telenor in Montenegro.

The Telenor group board of directors has an intention to request, at the annual shareholder's assembly, approval for distribution of a special dividend of 0,44 euro per share.

“The strategy of the Telenor group is based on growth, efficiency and the simplification of business. By selling the region of Central and Eastern Europe, we made an important step in simplifying and focusing the Telenor portfolio onto the regions where we see the biggest potential for getting the right values. After this transaction, Telenor will have integrated fixed-lines and mobile operations in Scandinavia and very strong mobile positions in Asia. The Telenor group believes that PPF, based on its experience in the region and the telecommunication sector, is a respectable new owner of Telenor’s operations," said Sigve Brekke, the president and general manager of the Telenor group.

PPF is the most prominent investment group in Central and Eastern Europe which participates in various businesses, including banking systems, financing of individuals, real estate, mining and telecommunications.

Among recent acquisitions are the O2 in the Czech Republic from Telefonika in 2012 and Nova Broadcasting Group in Bulgaria in 2018.

“With this purchase, PPF group expands its telecommunication portfolio to four more countries, and is getting closer to its long-term goal in becoming the European operator of medium importance, using its experience to strengthen its position on the market," said Ladislav Bartoniček, a representative of the PPF group liable for the telecommunication department.

The mobile operations in Central and Eastern Europe were in Telenor’s ownership for 25 years.

They entered the Hungarian market in 1994 by purchasing Pannon and later expanded its presence in the region by starting mobile services in Montenegro in 1996 and acquiring Mobi 063 in Serbia in 2006.

Text by Sladjana Djukanovic, on March 21st, 2018, read more at CdM

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