Chinese telecom operator China Mobile announced that the company plans to acquire a 18% stake in True, one of the three major telecom carriers in Thailand, for about CNY5.5 billion.
On the completion of the transaction, the two parties will implement cooperation in various sectors, including technology and network construction, procurement sharing, and market development. However, since the deal involves state-owned asset and listed company, it is still subject to the approval of regulatory authorities in Thailand.
According to the transaction agreement, China Mobile International Holdings will buy about CNY5.5 billion non-public offering shares from True. Meanwhile, True will raise more funds from its controlling shareholder and other public shareholders. After the closing of the deal, China Mobile International Holdings will own an 18% stake in True, making it the second largest shareholder of this Thai carrier.
Thailand has three major telecom operators: AIS, TAC and True. Of those, True is the only company which does not have an overseas cooperating partner. True's main businesses cover broadband network, mobile phones, and paid TV. By March 2014, True had about 29 million users.
Li Yue, chief executive officer of China Mobile, said that True is a leading company in Thailand's broadband and cable television industries and it has a strong market position in the 3G and 4G mobile business sector, making it an ideal partner for China Mobile.