Orascom: LINKdotNET sale contingent on France Telecom negotiations

Orascom Telecom CEO Khaled Beshara said his company has suspended the sale of its internet provider subsidiary LINKdotNET to MobiNil, an Orascom joint venture with France Telecom, until negotiations between the two holding companies are complete.

Orascom and France Telecom have been in conflict since last April, when an international arbitration ruled in favor of the French company’s right to buy Orascom’s 51 percent share in MobiNil.

Meanwhile, an Orascom emergency assembly with a 75 percent quorum approved raising the company’s licensed capital from LE2.5 billion to LE7.5 billion in order to generate enough liquidity to meet projected expansions in the coming two years. The company will also raise its actual capital to LE4.39 billion for the same purpose.

Beshara said the capital raise would not be used to pay the US$596 million in taxes levied by Algerian authorities on Orascom’s Algerian subsidiary Djezzy. Orascom owns 90 percent of the Algerian company.

"These would have to come from Djezzy’s US$260 million in generated profit from last year," he explained.

Translated from the Arabic Edition.

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