PTCL raises US$400 million to fund Telenor Pakistan buyout

PTCL raises US$400 million to fund Telenor Pakistan buyout

Pakistan Telecommunications Company Limited (PTCL) says it has raised US$400 million in debt financing to cover the cost of its planned acquisition of Telenor Pakistan.

In a statement issued to the Pakistan Stock Exchange on Monday, PTCL said the Board of Directors of International Finance Corporation (IFC) has approved the debt financing up to US$ 400 million for the purchase, which was first announced in mid-December 2023.

While the deal was initially reported to be valued in Norwegian kroner at NOK5.3 billion (US$490 million), PTCL said in the statement the enterprise value of the transaction in Pakistani rupees is PKR108 billion (US$388.5 million).

PTCL also said in the statement that finalization of workstreams to sign the financing agreements with IFC is still underway. The telco said it expects that to be completed on or before the end of July this year. Once that happens, PTCL will disclose details of the debt financing.

The sale of Telenor Pakistan to PTCL marked the end of Telenor’s 18-year run in the country as the company sought to restructure its business in Asia. It has also wrapped up mergers in Thailand and Malaysia, and has exited Myanmar completely.

The sale is a boost for PTCL’s mobile business Ufone, which has roughly 25 million subscribers. Acquiring Telenor Pakistan will add another 45 million customers to its roster.

Apart from its merged entities in Malaysia (CelcomDigi) and Thailand (True Corp), Telenor’s last standalone operation in Asia remains Grameenphone in Bangladesh.

On Sunday, Telenor Group CEO Sigve Brekke told the Daily Star that Telenor was “very committed” to the Bangladesh market, despite Grameenphone seeing its market share slip from 46% to 43% after the government imposed a temporary ban on SIM card sales between July 2022 and January 2023.

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