MTNL scraps Suntel bid once and for all

18 May 2009

Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Ltd (MTNL) has pulled out of a planned bid for a controlling stake in Sri Lankan wireless in the local loop (WiLL) operator Suntel, citing legal issues and high liabilities, reports India’s Business Standard. The Indian state-run telco was looking at acquiring a 50% stake for around USD180 million, but in January 2009 it was revealed that it had ‘suspended indefinitely’ its plan, after emerging as the preferred bidder the previous year. ‘We have decided not to go ahead with our plans to acquire Suntel, as there are a lot of issues. We have also intimated our decision to that company’s officials,’ MTNL Chairman and Managing Director RSP Sinha told Business Standard. MTNL Director of Finance Anita Soni added: ‘The company [Suntel] has a lot of uncertainties, including several court cases and financial liabilities. We were not sure which way the company was going, and being a public sector unit (PSU), we could not afford to run into legal issues… It was not a viable option and we decided to withdraw our acquisition plans,’ she said, adding that the company would look at other opportunities as they arise. Swedish-based TeliaSonera indirectly owns a 55% stake in Suntel, with the rest shared by Sri Lanka’s Metrocorp, National Development Bank of Sri Lanka, Townsend of Hong Kong and International Finance Corporation.

Subscribe

Subscribe to CommsUpdate to get the day’s top telecom headlines delivered to your email.

Subscribe to CommsUpdate

Feedback

Have feedback, corrections, or story ideas? Send them to editors@commsupdate.com.

Browse Past Issues

Filter

Filter CommsUpdate by the following categories or use the search.

Search

Visit our help page information on performing advanced searches, including how to restrict the results by country or company.

Advertise

CommsUpdate is an outstanding advertising venue for companies seeking to reach:

  • International carriers
  • Wholesale service providers
  • Equipment and software vendors
  • Telecom investors
  • Regulators

Learn more about advertising on CommsUpdate.

Share