The Saudi telecoms operator has been inching closer to the deal since the start of the year, having faced major set backs due to the pandemic
Back in January, Saudi Telecom Company (STC) signed a memorandum of understanding with Vodafone Group to acquire its 55% stake in Vodafone Egypt. At the time, the deal was evaluated at around $2.4 billion, with the accompanying partner market agreement including the use of the Vodafone brand and preferential roaming agreements.
Complications arose in February, when it became apparent that Egyptian law required STC must offer to purchase 100% of the business, in this case the 44.8% stake owned by Telecom Egypt, as well as the 0.2% held my minority shareholders. Telecom Egypt said at the time that it had no interest in selling its stake in the company, which is fortunate since more recent reports suggest that STC has no interest in purchasing it.
Just months later, the coronavirus pandemic was in full swing and STC delayed the planned acquisition, citing the uncertain global economy that was affecting the $2 billion financial package the company was seeking from Saudi banks to cover the purchase.
Now, however, the acquisition is finally beginning to get back on track, with STC having completed its due diligence study for the acquisition. Financial advisors will now review the study before constructing a final bid to be presented to Vodafone Group on the 15th of July.
The acquisition, if it does go ahead, will be STC’s first foray into the African telecoms market.