ATH BIND­ING OF­FER AC­CEPTED

By Am­pher SA for Pa­cific as­sets

Fiji Sun - - Sunbiz - Feed­back: rach­nal@fi­jisun.com.fj RACHNA LAL

Amal­ga­mated Tele­com Hold­ings Lim­ited has an­nounced that Amper SA (Amper) has ac­cepted its Bind­ing Of­fer for the sale of all of Amper’s in­ter­ests in the South Pa­cific. Amper is a Spain-based com­pany pri­mar­ily en­gaged in the telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions sec­tor.

It has var­i­ous tele­coms in­ter­ests in the Pa­cific, in­clud­ing AST Tele­com (Amer­i­can Samoa) and BlueSky Samoa (Samoa) – which jointly con­trol a 60 per cent stake in BlueSky Cook Is­lands (for­merly Tele­com Cook Is­lands). Un­der the key terms of the of­fer, ATH will ac­quire a con­trol­ling in­ter­est in the South Pa­cific units for a cash con­sid­er­a­tion of US$79,155,772 (FJ$163 mil­lion). ATH chair­man, Ajith Kodagoda, said they en­vis­age the in­vest­ment to be funded from a mix of debt and eq­uity. Amper will present and rec­om­mend the of­fer to their share­hold­ers at an up­com­ing spe­cial gen­eral meet­ing.

If nec­es­sary, it will seek share­holder rat­i­fi­ca­tion of ATH Of­fer for the ac­qui­si­tion of the Group’s sub­sidiaries in the South Pa­cific.

The trans­ac­tion will be sub­ject to req­ui­site reg­u­la­tory ap­provals and con­sents be­ing ob­tained. It is es­ti­mated that the par­ties will ex­e­cute the de­fin­i­tive agree­ment dur­ing Septem­ber.

What this will mean?

Mr Kodagoda ex­plained this in­vest­ment is fully con­sis­tent and aligned to ATH’s stated strat­egy of re­gional ex­pan­sion as it will pro­vide ATH mar­ket ac­cess and ser­vice de­liv­ery in four re­gional mar­kets. “This in­vest­ment also presents ATH a tremen­dous op­por­tu­nity to play a key role in im­prov­ing re­gional con­nec­tiv­ity and de­liv­er­ing mod­ern innovative ser­vices,” he said.

“This would be across the Pa­cific for the ben­e­fit on end users in all the mar­kets and coun­tries that we par­tic­i­pate in.”

Get­ting a re­turn

Such a big in­vest­ment will no doubt re­quire equally good re­turns which ATH is con­fi­dent of get­ting. Mr Kodagoda said the cur­rent op­er­a­tions within the ac­qui­si­tion are all fun­da­men­tally sound and record­ing good fi­nan­cial per­for­mance, so ATH is qui­etly con­fi­dent. “More­over, ATH be­lieves that ex­tend­ing op­er­a­tions on a re­gional ba­sis will fur­ther un­lock economies of scale and scope,” he said.

“Lastly, there are op­por­tu­ni­ties to­wards build­ing on much-needed re­gional and in­ter­na­tional con­nec­tiv­ity as a path­way to broad­band net­works with lower costs, im­proved speed, qual­ity and re­silience of ser­vices.” Mr Kodagoda said the ob­vi­ous next steps are the tran­si­tions and in­te­gra­tions re­quired to en­sure ser­vice con­ti­nu­ity con­sid­er­ing fur­ther im­prove­ments to the per­for­mance of the group com­pa­nies.

Mr Kodagoda ex­plained this in­vest­ment is fully con­sis­tent and aligned to ATH’s stated strat­egy of re­gional ex­pan­sion as it will pro­vide ATH mar­ket ac­cess and ser­vice de­liv­ery in four re­gional mar­kets.

Bluesky Samoa ban­ner .... The com­pany is part of the ATH ac­qui­si­tion of Span­ish com­pany Amper’s South Pa­cific in­ter­ests.

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