Honduras’ state-owned telecoms operator Hondutel has reportedly received no bids for its sale of a 49% stake in its recently established mobile joint venture Ehmovitel – Movitelh (Empresa Hondurena de Telefonia Movil). According to a report in local newspaper Tiempo, the director of operations within the Honduran Treasury Department, Heidy Mendoza, confirmed the news, which will be a blow to Hondutel. As reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, last month Hondutel extended the tender for its proposed sale of Ehmovitel – Movitelh until 25 January. Tender bids were originally due on 2 January, with the highest bidder being required to provide a USD5 million guarantee. No fewer than 13 different companies purchased the tender documents for a fee of HNL10,000 (USD500), but no bids were actually forthcoming by he 25 January deadline.
The firms lining up were thought to include Fideco-Datang Mobile (Guatemala), Datang Mobile (China), LR (Israel), and Rhino (US). Hondutel’s newly formed cellular subsidiary is expected to offer services in the 1900MHz band and will comprise the smaller mobile units it established between 2006 and 2009, namely: Tegucel, Sulacel, Olanchocel, Copancel, Cholucel and Ceibacel. The units collectively have more than 100,000 mobile users who will be transferred to Ehmovitel – Movitelh, Hondutel has said.