MobiFone Hires Credit Suisse to Advise on IPO - Source
Published on: 11th August 2008
SINGAPORE -(Dow Jones)- State-owned MobiFone has hired Credit Suisse Group as its financial advisor for a Vietnam initial public offering, proceeding with fundraising plans even as market conditions remain daunting.
The communist country's second-biggest mobile operator by subscribers is likely to sell 10%-15% of its equity in the IPO and another 10%-15% to a strategic partner, a person familiar with the deal said Monday.
"The intention is for the IPO to happen early next year," the person said. "At this point it's too early to talk about figures regarding proceeds."
The IPO plan comes as depressed conditions in Vietnam's stock market have led to weak demand for public offerings, leading some issuers to postpone deals or seek private funding. Most recently, Hanoi Beer Alcohol Beverage Corp., or Habeco, failed to sell all the shares offered in its March IPO, leading Denmark-based Carlsberg A/S to take up the remainder.
Several companies have approached MobiFone seeking to become its strategic partner including France Telecom, Vodafone Group, Singapore Telecommunications and ST Telemedia, a unit of Singapore's state-owned investment company Temasek Holdings, the person said.
The Vietnamese government has said it aims to keep majority control of MobiFone, but reduce its stake to 51%.
MobiFone has said it targets revenue of $1 billion this year, up 35% from 2007.
-By John Jannarone, Dow Jones Newswires; 65 6415 4153; email@example.com
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