Egyptian telecoms firms in talks to exit Algerian venture

15 November 2007

Telecom Egypt is in talks with two companies to sell the Algerian fixed-line operator Lacom.

Egypt’s fixed-line monopoly operator is also handling the talks on behalf of partner in the venture, Orascom Telecom.
Telecom Egypt’s chairman Akil Beshir said the talks would be finished in “two to three weeks”. His company wrote off £E258m ($45.4m) in its half-year results which were released in August, because it said Lacom was worth less than previously thought.
At the time, Orascom Telecom said that Telecom Egypt was being conservative in its valuation of the joint venture.
When Lacom launched it brought to an end Algerie Telecom’s monopoly of fixed-line telecoms.
Telecom Egypt also reported net profits of EGP 1.7bn ($308.5m) in the first nine months of 2007, compared with $1.5bn in the same period of 2006.

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