7 February 2003 -- The Romanian government has approved the deal under which Greece's Hellenic Telecommunications Organization SA (OTE) will raise its stake in Romanian telecoms operator RomTelecom SA from 35% to 54%, according to deputy communication minister Radu Cernov.
The deal includes a USD242.6m share capital injection by OTE, which will also pay USD30.9m for the direct acquisition of a 3.12% stake from the Romanian state. The share capital increase will consist of a USD145m cash injection, and the conversion of loans offered earlier by OTE to RomTelecom.
OTE bought a 35% stake in RomTelecom and voting control of another 16% in 1998 for USD675m. The Romanian government had a 65% stake in RomTelecom.
RomTelecom needs the funds to repay its debts and to invest, since it faces competition this year due to the end of its fixed-line telephone monopoly.