Vietnam Posts and Telecommunications (VNPT) Group will retain 20 percent of MobiFone, Vietnam’s second largest telecom firm, after hiving the group off and privatizing it next month.
VNPT's future stake in the company is the highest allowed by Vietnamese law, VnExpress quoted Minister Nguyen Bac Son as saying during a press conference on Tuesday.
The move is part of a government-ordered privatization plan for MobiFone that the Ministry of Information and Communication will submit to the Prime Minister for approval in the fourth quarter of this year, the minister said.
The move will take effect on July 1.
The Ho Chi Minh City Securities Corporation recently estimated MobiFone’s value at some US$3.4 billion, saying that the company could possibly be worth more than $4 billion if it continues to increase its income and profits after being separated from VNPT and prior to its initial public offering (IPO).
According to news website Bizlive, MobiFone earned VND41 trillion ($1.92 billion) in sales and VND6 trillion ($281 million) in profits last year, contributing to 34 percent of VNPT’s revenues and 65 percent of its profits.
As of last year, the company accounted for 21.4 percent share of Vietnam’s mobile phone market -- second only to the military-run Viettel which held 40.5 percent of the market.
The third-largest operator, Vinaphone, holds 19.88 percent of the market.
Vinaphone is also owned by VNPT and will remain under the group’s control after restructuring.
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