Malaysian telco Axiata is reportedly in talks to sell its 49% stake in Iran’s Mobile Telecommunications Company of Esfahan (MTCE). The unit, a joint venture with the Telecommunication Company of Esfahan (TCE), holds a regional mobile concession, limiting its services to Esfahan. Although MTCE does not provide subscriber figures, TeleGeography estimates that it had around 16,000 users at the end of September 2011, giving it a meagre market share of around 0.01%. Total Telecom quotes Axiata’s chief strategy officer, Azwan Khan Osman Khan, as saying: ‘It isn’t loss-making, but it is more of a distraction, which takes up management bandwidth’. However, he declined to comment on the asking price for the cellco or the identity of the potential buyer.
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