UK firm seeks to acquire 70pc stake in Telkom Kenya

Telkom Kenya
Telkom Kenya

U.K based investment firm Helios has registered a local firm, Jamhuri Holdings, to oversee the acquisition of a 70 per cent stake in Telkom Kenya.

Through a gazette notice, the Competition Authority of Kenya (CAK) approved the acquisition of the stake held by French mobile operator Orange.

“Pursuant to the provisions of section 46 (6) (a) (ii) of the Competition Act, 2010, it is notified for general information of the public that the Competition Authority of Kenya has authorized the proposed acquisition of 70% of the issued share capital of Telkom Kenya Limited by Jamhuri Holdings Limited,” CAK Director General Wang’ombe Kariuki said in the notice.

The deal has however faced delays with the Cabinet yet to sign off on the takeover.

While the Communications Authority had earlier approved the deal it set fee payment condition that places yet another hurdle for the firm.

The communications regulator asked Helios to offset Sh1.5 billion in frequency fees before the deal is cleared.

Helios is also in talks with Treasury, which owns the remaining 30 percent stake in Telkom Kenya to partly clear the frequency fees.

Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich last week said the ministry had brought in legal experts to comb through the deal before it’s tabled in Cabinet for approval.

“The documentations are being reviewed and in due course once we have the final approval from Cabinet, the transaction will be executed,” Mr Rotich said.

The Competition Authority however failed to give a value of the transaction.

The private equity firm has not given much in terms of the strategy it intends to adopt in the Kenyan market, but is believed to planning major operational changes.

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