Egyptian court to rule in Mobinil bid on Wednesday

An Egyptian court will issue a verdict on Wednesday on Orascom Telecom’s attempt to block an offer by France Telecom to buy all of Egyptian telecom operator Mobinil’s outstanding shares.

France Telecom offered to buy the shares at 245 Egyptian pounds apiece. The offer, which ends January 14, could cost the French telecoms company $2.9 billion if all shareholders agreed to sell.

Mobinil, formally known as the Egyptian Company for Mobile Services (ECMS), has been the subject of a long battle for control between its two main shareholders, Orascom Telecom and France Telecom, neither of which has a majority stake.

Orascom had filed an appeal against Egypt’s regulator’s approval of France Telecom’s bid. Orascom is arguing that France Telecom should have offered 273 pounds per share, equivalent to a price set by an arbitration court last April for the Mobinil shares Orascom held through a holding company.

But France Telecom had said it had no intention of raising its offered price.

Source: Reuters

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