Axiata signs up to take over telco tower firm

Malaysian mobile network company Axiata has signed an agreement to buy a controlling stake in a Myanmar mobile phone tower company owned by Jamaica-based Digicel, reports said last week.

Axiata Group said its tower company, edotco Group, had signed the conditional share purchase agreement to buy a controlling stake in Digicel Myanmar Tower Co., Ltd., via Digicel Group’s Singapore-based holding company, Digicel Asian Holdings.

The transaction valued MTC at an enterprise value of US$221 million, Axiata, Malaysia’s largest mobile network company by revenue, said in a statement issued in kuala Lumpur on october 2. Digicel would see a gain of US$60 million on the sale, the Irish Independent newspaper reported.

The Axiata statement quoted edotco chief executive Suresh Sidhu saying the acquisition provided an opportunity for the company in the largely untapped Myanmar market.

“The Myanmar telecommunications industry with its low mobile penetration, favourable regulatory conditions and high reliance on tower and infrastructure sharing presents significant potential for the edotco business as it expands into the new market,” Mr Sidhu said.

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Axiata established edotco in 2012 as a wholly-owned telecommunication infrastructure services subsidiary and its manages more than 140,000 towers throughout Asia, including in Malaysia, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Sri Lanka and Pakistan.

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