Seasoned pro Digicel hungry for Kiwi main course, Cooks’ portion for dessert?

27 Feb 2014

Cook Islands finance minister Mark Brown says that multi-national cellular group Digicel has indicated its interest in purchasing the government’s 40% stake in Telecom Cook Islands (TCI), following reports that the pan-Caribbean/Pacific mobile operator is on the verge of acquiring Telecom New Zealand’s (TNZ’s) 60% TCI shareholding. IslandsBusiness.com quotes Brown as saying that the government has yet to receive an offer from Digicel while no official decision has been made as to whether the government-held shares would be sold, pending analysis such as forecasting future cash flows for the telco. The government currently retains two board members on TCI’s five-person board, and to maintain a boardroom presence it would need to keep at least 20% ownership. A Digicel representative visited the Cook Islands last week to study the regulatory environment, along with fees, taxes and levies that would apply if the Jamaica-based group, with operations in 31 countries, entered the local market. Brown also reiterated a previous public statement that the government has no intention to take majority control of TCI and would waive its right of first refusal on the potential Digicel-TNZ 60% share purchase deal.

Cook Islands , Bluesky Cook Islands, Digicel Group, Spark, Spark New Zealand Group

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