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Abu Dhabi Group eyes sale of Warid Telecom

Etisalat and China Mobile weigh bids for Pakistani operator: Reuters

The UAE's Abu Dhabi Group is planning to sell Warid Telecom, reports indicate.
The UAE's Abu Dhabi Group is planning to sell Warid Telecom, reports indicate.

The UAE's Abu Dhabi Group, a business conglomerate led by a ruling family member, is planning to sell Warid Telecom, an operator in Pakistan, Reuters reported.

The proposed sale, which is reported to be for all 100% shares of Warid Telecom, is likely to draw interest from UAE incumbent Etisalat and from China Mobile, the report added, citing sources familiar with the matter.

Pakistan mobile operator Warid Telecom has been put up for sale by its Abu Dhabi owners and is likely to draw interest from China Mobile and Etisalat, two sources familiar with the matter said on Tuesday.

However, a third source indicated that Abu Dhabi Group would be prepared to sell a smaller controlling stake in Warid Telecom.

The sellers have mandated US investment bank Lazard and British lender Standard Chartered as advisers for the process, the sources said. The sale could fetch about $bn, according to one of the sources.

Walid Irshaid, CEO of Pakistan Telecommunications (PTCL), a unit of Etisalat, said the company would was "interested to see if it makes sense for us".

"Warid is an existing operator that has been here for many years and so we're saying ‘let's look at the prospects'," Reuters quoted him as saying.

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