Telcos fill war chests

12 June 2006
Emirates Telecommunications Corporation (Etisalat) has mandated a four-strong group of banks to arrange a $3,000 million revolving line of credit to fund future expansion. The deal coincides with syndication being launched of a similar facility for Kuwait's MTC.
Emirates Telecommunications Corporation (Etisalat) has mandated a four-strong group of banks to arrange a $3,000 million revolving line of credit to fund future expansion. The deal coincides with syndication being launched of a similar facility for Kuwait's MTC.

Barclays Bank, Citigroup, Deutsche Bank and HSBC will equally underwrite the Etisalat funding, which will have a tenor of one year with an optional one-year extension. It will be conventionally structured.

Etisalat is expanding aggressively abroad. It recently acquired a GSM licence in Afghanistan, finalised a deal to take control of Pakistan Telecommunication Company and is among the bidders for Egypt's third GSM licence (MEED 9:6:06).

MTC has appointed BNP Paribas, Calyon, Credit Suisse First Boston and UBS to arrange its five-year revolving facility. Banks can offer either Islamic or conventional finance. The size of the five-year deal has been scaled back to $4,000 million from the $5,000 million initially announced in February (MEED 3:2:06).

MTC is likewise on an expansion drive. It is also bidding in Egypt and, through subsidiary Celtel International, recently acquired Nigerian GSM operator Vmobile.

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