Orascom Telecom Undergoing Discussions about Sale of its African Assets

It has been reported that Egypt's Orascom Telecom is still discussing about the sale of its African assets. They still have expectations for a possible deal after unsuccessful talks with South Africa's MTN.

MTN had been in negotiations to acquire some or all of Orascom's operations. If all the assets of Egyptian firms were to be included, this deal could have created the world's third-largest mobile operator. After the Government of Algeria refused to let Orascom sell its profitable unit Djezzy, the talks collapsed.

The daily al-Mal said that Orascom Telecom Holding will continue with negotiations to sell its African units. According to sources, Orascom was also discussing the same with a regional operator and an European group present in emerging markets, but the name of the firm was not revealed.

According to analysts, there are number of candidates willing to purchase the Egyptian firm's distant operations that function from North Korea to North Africa.

"A deal to sell African assets, excluding Algeria, should be easier, given the obstacles placed by the Algerian government for the sale of Djezzy", Beltone Analyst Sally Gerges said.

The Government of Algeria says that it has a right to bid on Djezzy before any foreign buyer under the law enacted in 2009.