GOVERNMENT through ZARNet (Private) Limited has completed the previously announced acquisition of 100 percent shareholding in Telecel International Limited from Global Telecom Holdings SAE for $40 million, the Ministry of ICT, Postal and Courier Services said yesterday.TIL owns 60 percent shareholding in Telecel Zimbabwe (Private) Limited with the Empowerment Corporation controlling the remaining 40 percent.
VimpelCom, a leading global provider of telecommunications and digital services head-quartered in Amsterdam and serving over 200 million customers, also confirmed the developments in a statement yesterday.
The Minister of ICT, Postal and Courier Services, Supa Mandiwanzira said $21 million has been transferred by ZARNet to GTN outside Zimbabwe, and the balance of $19 million will be paid as deferred consideration.
ZARNet is wholly owned by Government through the Ministry of ICT, Postal and Courier Services.
“As a result of the transaction completion, the Government of Zimbabwe through ZARNet (Private) Limited takes effective management control of Telecel Zimbabwe,” said Minister Mandiwanzira.
“The completion secures the future of Telecel Zimbabwe as an operation and the Minister of ICT, Postal and Courier Services would like to assure all employees, customers, suppliers and other stakeholders that the future is orange; it is bright.”
He reiterated that Government’s intentions remain to secure 100 percent shareholding in Telecel Zimbabwe, in the process “sanitising” the numerous shareholder related disputes that have dogged business growth and scared away investors.
The remaining 40 percent is owned by the Empowerment Corporation which has in turn mortgaged 15 percent as part of a loan agreement with Brainworks Capital.
“The Minister of ICT, Postal and Courier Services would like to thank His Excellency President Mugabe for his excellent guidance in closing the transaction; the Cabinet for its clarity and direction on the matter and ZARNet’s financiers.”
Minister Mandiwanzira has in the past hinted that it will seek to enter into a management contract with an international firm once the acquisition is completed. He has also said after two years, Government would seek to sell the stake or list it on the stock exchange.