Kazakhtelecom to sell mobile unit MTS to Power International Holding

Kazakhtelecom to sell mobile unit MTS to Power International Holding

Qatar-based conglomerate Power International Holding (PIH) announced on Friday it has signed an agreement of principles to acquire Kazakhstan mobile operator Mobile Telecom Services (MTS) from incumbent state telco Kazakhtelecom JSC.

Under the agreement, which was signed in Qatar by PIH, Kazakhtelecom and its stakeholder, Samruk-Kazyna (Kazakhstan’s Sovereign Wealth Fund), PIH agreed to purchase a 100% stake in MTS. The final terms of the sale, including the actual transaction amount, have yet to be determined.

Kazakhtelecom acquired 100% of MTS (which operates under the brands Tele2/Altel) in 2019, around a year after acquiring another mobile operator, Kcell. The telco has been running both networks as separate companies to satisfy regulatory concerns over competition.

In July 2023, Kazakstan’s Ministry of Digital Development revealed that Kazakhtelecom planned to sell off at least one of its mobile units before the end of the year. Last month, it was decided at a meeting of the State Commission on Economic Modernization to sell MTS.

PIH chairman Mohammed Moutaz Al-Khayyat said in a statement the deal will expand PIH's business in Kazakhstan "due to its promising investment opportunities and advanced business environment.”

Meanwhile, PIH CEO Ramez Al-Khayyat added that the acquisition will broaden the company's technology offerings by applying “data analytics to customer behaviour, network infrastructure performance, digital payments and market trends to introduce new digital products and services.”

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