Etisalat Confirms its Interest in Warid Buyout

Warid-LogoEtisalat today confirmed that PTCL, group’s Pakistani arm, is interested in Warid telecom of Pakistan.

There were long running rumors about PTCL interested in buying Warid Telecom of Pakistan, which was today confirmed by Etisalat in a statement shared with media.

Trade Arabia, a paper based out of Bahrain, reported that Etisalat has confirmed that its affiliate Pakistan Telecommunication Co (PTCL) had expressed interest in Mobile operator Warid Telecom.

Media reports from last month had suggested that PTCL is in aggressive talks with Warid Telecom for a likely buyout that could value around USD 1 billion. Later it was unveiled that Etisalat hired Goldman Sachs to take advise on the acquisition.

PTCL had first hinted for an acquisition back in 2009. Mr. Walid Irshaad, President and CEO of PTCL has often talked about buyout and seemed interested in Warid since long.

Warid, reportedly, remained in talks with PTCL for sell-out during 2011, however, things didn’t go through and company had to officially announce for not going for any merger/sellout.

Warid took time to strengthen its market position and is now again up with merger/acquisition talks.

If sources are to be believed that Dubai and Abu Dhabi is hosting several meetings these days to finalize the deal. While we don’t have any timeline for the outcome, but it appears that next one month is going to remain crucial. It is likely that any decision, either to go for buyout or not, will surface with-in next 45 days.

Warid Telecom is fully owned by Dhabi Group of UAE.

    • I wonder if that $1 billion will even reach Pakistani banks, given how warid is held by UAE company already. So it is just a transaction between UAE to UAE.

  • It will be interesting from a tax perspective. These are shares of ultimately a private Pakistani company and must be taxed accordingly at 35% of the capital gains and this money must be deposited to the Government of Pakistan. FBR should take note. In India the Vodafone transaction on the same lines resulted in a $2Bn tax liability for Vodafone when it bought out shares of an Indian telecom company.

    Anybody can google Vodafone India tax to find out more…

  • If Warid is acquired by Etisalat, would it be merged with Ufone or Etisalat would operate it as Warid or Etisalat, the separate entity?>

  • Indian Supreme Court had ruled last year in Vodafone’s favour, saying the British company was not liable to pay any tax over its 2007 acquisition of Hutchison’s stake in Hutchison Essar Mobile. The government later that year changed the rules to enable it to make retroactive tax claims on already-concluded deals, drawing criticism from global investors.

  • ETISALAT has to pay Pakistan 800 million USD. They owe us the amount for over 9 years.This deal be only allowed once our dues are cleared.

    • The reason for the delay in payment is due to disputes on properties (which were to be transferred in name of Etisalat after the transfer). Since, this was the responsibility of the PK govt., Etisalat withheld the payment till this issue is resolved.

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