A year later, stc-Vodafone Egypt deal still making headlines despite fallout

A year later, stc-Vodafone Egypt deal still making headlines despite fallout
Negotiations between STC and the Vodafone Group are back on the table after negotiations fell through in December. (Shutterstock)
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Updated 27 September 2021

A year later, stc-Vodafone Egypt deal still making headlines despite fallout

A year later, stc-Vodafone Egypt deal still making headlines despite fallout
  • Telecom Egypt doesn't have any knowledge of stc resuming acquisition negotiations with Vodafone Egypt

CAIRO: Almost a year passed since talks between stc, and Vodafone International Group ended without reaching an agreement on stake sales in the Egyptian unit to the Saudi largest mobile operator, however, the deal still makes headlines.

Few days ago, CNBC Arabiya TV quoted sources saying that negotiations between STC and the Vodafone Group are back on the table after negotiations fell through in December.

The network said that the Saudi company is looking to secure a soft loan of about $1.1 billion to finance the deal using part of the liquidity available to it, and another part of the global debt markets.

Telecom Egypt - the largest telephone operator in Egypt - denied knowledge of renewed negotiations between stc and the Vodafone Group to acquire its stake in Vodafone Egypt.

In a bourse filing, Telecom Egypt attached four previous statements it issued regarding the deal during the period from January 29, 2020 to June 7, 2021, denying its knowledge of any recent developments.

Ayman Essam, head of the External and Legal Relations Sector at Vodafone Egypt, denied the existence of any ongoing talks at the present time between the Vodafone International Group and stc.

In an official statement, Essam affirmed Vodafone's commitment to the Egyptian market and work to provide a distinguished service to its customers, pointing out that his company recently obtained a new frequency package to improve the service, in addition to pumping several investments in the field of network, digital transformation and a number of financial inclusion projects in Egypt.

Negotiations to acquire Vodafone’s 55% stake in Vodafone Egypt began in January 2020, for $2.39 billion, according to a non-binding preliminary agreement signed at the time with stc.

Vodafone International agreed to enable the Saudi company to carry out the due diligence process for a period of 75 days, which can be extended, and in April 2020 stc requested an extension until June due to the repercussions of the coronavirus, and then the deadline was pushed again to September 12.

In September of last year, stc said that the period of the memorandum of understanding signed with Vodafone Egypt ended without reaching an agreement but the dialogue was open between the two parties.


US supply chain woes to stretch into 2022, warns top official

US supply chain woes to stretch into 2022, warns top official
Updated 17 October 2021

US supply chain woes to stretch into 2022, warns top official

US supply chain woes to stretch into 2022, warns top official

WASHINGTON: The US transportation secretary on Sunday warned that America’s supply chain woes including clogged ports will drag into next year, potentially cramping the upcoming holiday shopping season in the world’s largest economy.

Pete Buttigieg did the rounds on US political talk shows to stress that President Joe Biden’s administration was doing everything it could to alleviate congestion at the country’s overloaded ports, railways and roads, and that the government will “re-evaluate all of our options” to relieve the bottlenecks.

But “a lot of the challenges that we have been experiencing this year will continue into next year,” the transport chief and former presidential candidate told CNN’s “State of the Union” show.


Saudi Arabia gets a boost in maritime connectivity rankings

Saudi Arabia gets a boost in maritime connectivity rankings
Updated 17 October 2021

Saudi Arabia gets a boost in maritime connectivity rankings

Saudi Arabia gets a boost in maritime connectivity rankings

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia made impressive progress in maritime connectivity at the regional level, according to the UN Conference on Trade and Development report for the third quarter of 2021.

The Kingdom achieved 70.68 points in the Maritime Connectivity Index, which is the highest in the region, said the report.

The Saudi Ports Authority, also known as Mawani, has forged partnerships with operators and major international shipping lines to develop the Kingdom’s seaports and contribute to the national goal of transforming Saudi Arabia into a global logistics hub.

Omar bin Talal Hariri, president of Mawani, said the authority is proud of the achievement and will intensify its efforts to meet the aspirations of the Kingdom’s leadership.

The index includes several sub-indicators, most notably, the number of scheduled visits by ships to the country within a week, capacity of the ships in standard units, in addition to the number of regular service paths provided by shipping lines to and from the country.


UAE-based Al Dahra to open 3 plants in Eastern Europe


UAE-based Al Dahra to open 3 plants in Eastern Europe

Updated 17 October 2021

UAE-based Al Dahra to open 3 plants in Eastern Europe


UAE-based Al Dahra to open 3 plants in Eastern Europe


RIYADH: Al Dhara Holding, an Abu Dhabi-based agricultural company, will establish five new animal feed plants in Eastern Europe.

The new plants will be established in Serbia, Romania and Bulgaria. The new facilities are part of the company’s efforts to expand its horizons and diversify its sources of production.

The company has opened its first plant for compressing and drying animal feed in Serbia with a production capacity of 120,000 tons and storage capacity of 20,000 tons.

 


Foreign investments in Egypt’s oil sector see 26.02% decline, says minister

Foreign investments in Egypt’s oil sector see 26.02% decline, says minister
Updated 17 October 2021

Foreign investments in Egypt’s oil sector see 26.02% decline, says minister

Foreign investments in Egypt’s oil sector see 26.02% decline, says minister

CAIRO: Egypt's oil minister said on Sunday that foreign investments in the sector fell 26.02% to $5.4 billion in the financial year 2020-21, versus $7.3 billion a year earlier.

“The coronavirus crisis led to a slowdown in investments from international oil companies worldwide,” Tarek El Molla said in a speech to the Egyptian Petroleum Association. 


Over 86,000 Saudi families benefit from Sakani subsidized loans

Over 86,000 Saudi families benefit from Sakani subsidized loans
Updated 17 October 2021

Over 86,000 Saudi families benefit from Sakani subsidized loans

Over 86,000 Saudi families benefit from Sakani subsidized loans

RIYADH: More than 86,000 Saudi families benefited from the Housing Ministry’s Sakani program subsidized real estate loans since the beginning of the year till September, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Sunday.

The program offers two types of subsidized loans, one for ready-made housing units and the other meant for under-construction buildings.

Of the total, 69,497 families benefited from the loan offered for ready-made housing units.

The Ministry of Housing and the Real Estate Development Fund formed Sakani in 2017 to facilitate homeownership in the Kingdom through the creation of new housing stock, allocating plots and homes to nationals, and financing their purchase. It has a goal of reaching 70 percent homeownership by 2030.

The program also launched new e-services to serve people effectively.