Amsterdam-based, Russian-backed VEON has terminated its offer to take direct ownership of its Pakistan and Bangladesh mobile operating units currently held via the group’s Egypt-based subsidiary Global Telecom Holding (GTH), partly due to recent currency devaluation in Pakistan. VEON, listed on the US NASDAQ and Euronext Amsterdam stock markets, said in a release yesterday that it has cancelled the USD2.55 billion share offer (launched on 2 July) ‘in light of recent events surrounding the Pakistani Rupee and the reaction to the offer by GTH minority shareholders, which suggests that approval would not have been forthcoming’. It added: ‘VEON will continue to explore options to address its strategic relationship with GTH and its minority shareholders.’ VEON owns 57.7% of GTH and already consolidates the results of cellcos Jazz (Pakistan) and Banglalink (Bangladesh) plus another GTH subsidiary, Djezzy (Algeria).
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