Viettel Global Investment (Viettel Global) has purchased a 65% stake in Tanzanian firm Epocha & Golden Ocean (EGOTEL) for USD18 million as part of a plan to invest up to USD337.7 million in the country. Viettel Global will inject USD61.7 into the would-be wireless operator as well as mobilising USD146.1 million for it, in the form of loans from shareholders in cash and/or equipment.
Epocha & Golden Ocean, trading as EGOTEL, was licensed by the Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority (TCRA) on 21 November 2008. It holds a national Network Facilities (NF) licence for fixed line and mobile networks, and is thought to be looking to roll out a third-generation mobile network based on UMTS/W-CDMA technology. Until Viettel Globe’s announcement, EGOTEL was reportedly owned by Singapore’s Bitmap (65%) and the J & AK Group Company (35%).