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Axiata sells Thai stake

An employee of Axiata Group’s Cambodian mobile service provider Hello
works at the company’s service centre in Phnom Penh yesterday. Axiata
has sold its stake in Thai mobile multimedia and I&T company Samart
Corp to focus on its ‘primary business’.Photo by: Will Baxter
Axiata Group Berhard – the owner of domestic mobile provider Hello –
has sold its 18.9 percent stake in Samart Corporation Public Company to
existing shareholders.

Originally acquired in 1997, the stake
fetched US$34.8 million from Samart shareholders late last week. It was
sold as part of Axiata’s plan to better focus on its “primary
business”, according to company officials.

“This divestment
reinforces our commitment to focus on our primary business of mobile
communications,” Axiata president and CEO Dato’ Sri Jamaludin Ibrahim
said in a press release.

In Cambodia, Thailand-based Samart
operates Cambodia Air Traffic Services and Kampot Power Plant Co, as
well as regional mobile multimedia and ICT-related business, according
to its website.

Cambodia’s State Secretariat of Civil Aviation
entered into a 22-year exclusive agreement with Samart to develop and
operate the domestic civil air traffic control and navigation system in
January 2001.

Axiata, which is Malaysia’s second-biggest mobile
phone operator, will retain its 24.4 percent stake in Samart subsidiary
Samart i-Mobile.

Samart officials could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Axiata shares rose to a two-week high in Kuala Lumpur trading after announcing the Samart sale.

The shares added 0.4 percent to 4.72 ringgit, the highest close since December 14.

Phnom Penh Post
Categories: Local News
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