Thursday, 7 October 2010

Orascom Telecom sells assets to Russia's VimpelCom

Orascom Telecom, one of Egypt's most popular traded shares, rose 5.5 per cent after the announcement that it had reached a US$6.7 billion deal to sell some of its assets to the Russian company VimpelCom.

The deal is complex and will take some time to unravel. It means that Neguib Sawiris, the billionaire tycoon owner of Orascom, will be even richer. He said that the assets not included in the deal: Egypt's Mobinil and a mobile phone company in North Korea, among others, would be bundled into a new company next year.

The deal may or may not speed resolution of the dispute between Orascom and its subsidiary in Algeria, Djezzy. Hopes that Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev might smooth the way for a resolution of the dispute over Djezzy have yet to emerge.

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© 2010 Menas Associates

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