Sunday 4 December 2016

Digicel mulls sale of Myanmar towers

Published 05/07/2015 | 02:30

Denis O'Brien
Denis O'Brien

Denis O'Brien's communications group Digicel is "evaluating" an approach to buy its mobile-phone mast business in the Asian state of Myanmar.

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"Digicel has received a number of expressions of interest regarding an acquisition of the business and is evaluating the options relating to it," say documents circulated ahead of its planned IPO on US markets later this year.

Local reports suggested several companies had made initial bids and are undergoing a due diligence process

Digicel made an ambitious bid to land one of the two mobile-phone licences which were put up for auction by the Myanmar authorities in 2013. It was unsuccessful, with groups involving Norway's Telenor and Qatar's Ooredoo landing the licences.

However, Digicel invested in building the mobile-communications infrastructure in the rapidly increasing market.

It owns 75pc of a company called DAHPL, with YSH Finance owning the other 25pc. In December 2013, the joint venture inked a deal with Ooredoo Myanmar to develop, construct and lease 1,250 telecom towers.

Digicel investor documents noted that it spent "approximately $90m in relation to the roll out of its tower company in Myanmar".

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