The Government of Serbia will announce a tender for sale of 51% of Telekom Srbija’s shares next week at the minimum starting price of 1.4 billion euros. The decision on the announcement of the tender should be made at today’s meeting of the Government.
The Government’s decision will also envisage the distribution of 15% of free shares among citizens, as well as 6.4% among current and former employees of Telekom Srbija.
The starting minimum price of 1.4 billion euros is lower than the initial expectations of the Government, which expected, on the basis of the preliminary estimates given by privatization adviser Citigroup, a minimum of 1.6 billion euros. However, after the approximate appraisal, the adviser has also recently finished the final appraisal of Telekom, which says that the national operator is worth 2.5 billion euros, significantly less than expected. The Government has decided to raise the “threshold” for the buyers of 51% of shares to 1.4 billion euros (instead of 1.25 billion euros).
The buyer of Telekom Srbija also acquires the ownership of Telekom Srpska and Montenegrin M-tel. According to some earlier announcements, the Government of Serbia should keep the so-called golden share, which will enable it to interfere (the right of veto) when some strategically important decisions are being made.
Among the interested buyers, which have so far contacted the privatization adviser, are France Telekom, Telekom Austria, Orascom and Deutsche Telekom. If any of them is ready to pay minimum 1.4 billion euros, Telekom may have the new majority owner already from the New Year.