TeliaSonera to exit Eurasia

Nordic operator TeliaSonera plans to exit its Eurasian operations and focus instead on growing its business in Sweden and Europe.

The operator said that the decision came after considering what was best for its shareholders, operations, employees and customers.

“Thanks to two years of hard work to improve the Eurasian operations, not least from a corporate governance and sustainability perspective, we now have better and more well-managed companies which we believe others can successfully develop further,” said Johan Dennelind, TeliaSonera CEO.

The countries it plans to exit include Nepal, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova and Tajikstan, but TeliaSonera said that it was not possible to estimate how long it would take.

TeliaSonera is a majority shareholder in Turkcell and also its partner in Fintur Holdings through a 58.55% stake. The Turkish operator said today that it plans to appoint a strategic and financial advisor to help it acquire the remaining 41.45% stake in Fintur from TeliaSonera.

Concerns were raised over TeliaSonera’s purchase of a 3G licence in Uzbekistan in 2012 but an internal investigation found that it did not break any laws.

However, the alleged corruption scandal saw the CEO, CFO and three other senior executives leave the company.


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