NOVEMBER 19, 2007 -- The Kenyan State has selected the consortium controlled by France Telecom (search for France Telecom) as the preferred bidder for the acquisition of a 51% stake in the incumbent operator Telkom Kenya for a consideration of $ 390 million (about 270 million euros). The transaction is planned to close before the end of the year. Telkom Kenya serves over 280,000 fixed line customers and will benefit from a new mobile license.
France Telecom has teamed up with Alcazar Capital Limited, who subscribed to a 15% stake in the consortium. A shareholder of Alcazar is Agility, one of the world's leading logistics services providers, which has a strong presence in emerging markets. France Telecom says it will benefit from Alcazar and Agility's knowledge of the Kenyan market.
According to France Telecom, this transaction fits well with its strategy of targeted development in fast growing markets. With France Telecom, Telkom Kenya will develop convergent telecommunication services, i.e. mobile, fixed, and Internet based. As mobile penetration is currently lower than 30%, the Kenyan mobile market still offers a high growth potential. France Telecom expects to benefit from the existing infrastructure of Telkom Kenya to develop and launch its 2.5 G network in the short term.
Furthermore, the planned implementation of submarine cables in 2009 will give Telkom Kenya the means to offer affordable prices and become a leader on the high-speed Internet market, say France Telecom representatives.
France Telecom aims to market Telkom Kenya's services under the Orange brand, enabling its clients to benefit from the services developed by the France Telecom Group.
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