Telenor Pakistan intends to quit Pakistan’s market amid rising costs and dwindling possibilities.
Telenor Pakistan is reportedly negotiating to sell its business to an Emirates-based telecom operator.
Sources confirmed that talks between the Emirati corporation, which already has a major presence in Pakistan, and Telenor are “advanced.”
A source in the IT ministry acknowledged a transaction was in the works but declined to go further.
A buyer wants to buy Pakistan’s second-largest telecom provider for under $1bn.
Bloomberg reported in November that Norway’s telecom operator hired Citigroup to bid.
A source said the Norwegian company had hired two known worldwide investment banks to handle the sale.
“The Emirati corporation already has a large footprint in Pakistan in practically all critical telecom fields, and it wants to consolidate its position,” a source added.
The insider stated the company started losing money due to the US dollar’s rapid rise, which led to rising business costs.
A source said that the company’s operational expenditures had reached $55 million, with electricity rates accounting for the largest portion. The company paid $17 million in power bills in the previous fiscal year to keep its infrastructure working.
Experts think it’s reasonable that Telenor Pakistan would try to lower its losses and expand into a region with greater financial prospects or returns than Pakistan.
The company reportedly asked for $1 billion to $1.2 billion, while the buyer wants to spend $780-910 million.