Brazil’s Oi sells operation in Timor-Leste for US$62 million

15 December 2016

Brazilian operator Oi said it had requested legal permission to sell its stake in Timor Telecom to the Investel Communications Limited group owned by Timorese businessman Abilio Araújo, for US$62 million.

In a press release, the company – which is in bankruptcy protection – filed the request with a Rio de Janeiro district court to sell the asset.

Oi had received three “firm and binding” offers to buy its stake in Timor Telecom.

Two of the three offers were made by groups led by Timorese entrepreneurs and the third by a Fijian pension fund.

The two Timorese investors interested in the deal were Abilio Araújo, who has partners and capital from the Middle East and China and Nilton Gusmão, of the ETO Group.

The deal involves the largest stake in Timor Telecom (54.01%), controlled by Telecomunicações Públicas de Timor-Leste (TPT), which, in turn, is 76% owned by Oi along with an additional direct shareholding through PT Participações SGPS of 3.05%.

The remaining shareholders of TPT are the Fundação Harii – Sociedade para o Desenvolvimento de Timor-Leste (linked to the diocese of Baucau), which controls 18%, and Fundação Oriente (6%).

In Timor Telecom, the capital is divided between TPT (54.01%), the Timorese State (20.59%), Macau-based VDT Operator Holdings (17.86%) and Timorese businessman Julio Alfaro (4.49%).

The telecommunications companies operating in Timor-Leste, as well as Timor Telecom the first company to establish itself in the country, are Indonesian company Telkomcel and Vietnamese company Telemor, both State-owned. (macauhub)