Weather looks good in Greece

Egyptian telecom magnate Naguib Sawiris has made his second move on the European telecoms market with the purchase of Greek mobile operator TIM Hellas.

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By  Administrator Published  February 14, 2007

Egyptian telecom magnate Naguib Sawiris has made his second move on the European telecoms market with the purchase of Greek mobile operator TIM Hellas.

Weather Investments, a financing house 97% owned by the Sawiris family, last week agreed to acquire the operator for US$4.4 billion from private equity firms Texas Pacific Group (TPG) and Apax Partners (APX).

The private equity firms acquired TIM Hellas for US$2 billion in June 2005.

Through the deal, which is subject to European Commission approval, Sawiris will also get his hands on TIM Hellas’ wholly owned subsidiary Q-Telecom, the fourth largest Greek mobile operator, which TPG and APX bought a year ago.

Weather’s first purchase in the European telecoms market was Italian cellular operator Wind in 2005.
“We expect to create significant value for the group by adding TIM Hellas to our portfolio and by further building on group wide synergies at all levels,” Sawiris said in a statement.

Sawiris is CEO of one of the Middle East’s largest mobile phone operators, Orascom Telecom, which operates cell networks in Algeria, Bangladesh, Egypt, Iraq, Pakistan, Tunisia and Zimbabwe. Orascom Telecom is not a party to the TIM Hellas acquisition and is not affected by it, Weather said.

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