Vivendi’s Maroc Telecom stake reportedly attracts four bidders
Vivendi’s sale of its stake in Maroc Telecom has reportedly attracted interest from four suitors.
Reuters reports that the French media group has received expressions of interest in the 53% stake from Qtel, Etisalat, Saudi Telecom and South Africa’s MTN, citing two people familiar with the matter.
Vivendi hopes to raise at least $7.13 billion from the sale and has set no official deadline for offers.
The Kingdom of Morocco, which owns a 30% stake in Maroc, has right of approval for any bid.
Maroc offers fixed-line, mobile and internet services in Burkina Faso, Gabon, Mali and Mauritiana, and is Vivendi’s second highest contributor to earnings behind French operator SFR.
Vivendi is engaged in a restructuring to cut debt and raise its share price. The group has also hired advisors for the sale of its Brazilian unit GVT and is rumoured to be considering a merger of SFR with French cable group Numericable.
Qtel is so far considered the most likely bidder due to having the necessary funds available to acquire Maroc, the Qatari carrier was first linked with the stake earlier this week.
None of the four parties would offer confirmation of their interest to Reuters.
Under local market rules any bidder will be required to offer to buy out minority shareholders in Maroc. This could mean that the Moroccan state would look to reduce its stake.