In a setback, International company calls of near $1billion deal with Pakistan

In a setback, International company calls of near $1billion deal with Pakistan

ISLAMABAD – Edotco Group Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary of Malaysian telecoms firm Axiata Group Bhd, has called off one of the biggest ever telecom deal in Pakistan.

Edtco has called off a US$940 million deal to buy 13,000 telecoms towers from Pakistan Mobile Communications Limited (PMCL).

Axiata subsidiary edotco Group said in a statement that it will not proceed with the purchase of Deodar, a unit of Pakistan Mobile Communications Ltd (PMCL) that owns the towers.

Edotco, which is 62.4 percent-owned by Axiata, said that the transaction was subject to a number of conditions and terminated due to the non-fulfilment of the conditions precedent to the SPA within the stipulated timeframe, in particular regulatory approval for the resulting change of control contemplated under the SPA.

“Edotco remains committed to Pakistan and will continue to grow its existing business under edotco Pakistan, comprising today of the towers acquired by Tanzanite Towers carried out earlier this year,” the statement added.

Edotco Group Chief Executive Officer Suresh Sidhu said: “We do not foresee this affecting our business goals and aspirations. We are confident in the potential of the growing market in Pakistan and are committed to the existing operations there. We continue to develop our pipeline of opportunities into Pakistan as well as into other markets in South and South East Asia and are confident we will be able to meet our goals for business growth.”

The company’s Country Managing Director Arif Hussain added: “We have seen strong progress in Pakistan since our first acquisition here and business continues to grow with new orders for sites as well as high demand for adjacent opportunities such as energy solutions. We remain focused on building the business in Pakistan.”

The deal, announced in August last year, would have made edotco the second-largest multi-country tower operator globally and the eighth-largest independent tower firm.

Edotco and its Pakistani partner Dawood Hercules Corp Ltd had planned to acquire Deodar. Axiata’s shares dropped as much as 2.4 percent after the announcement, but pared losses. Malaysian markets were closed on Monday.