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SA’s Telkom confirms takeover bid discussions with former CEO

Sipho Maseko.
Sipho Maseko.

South Africa’s telephony group Telkom has today confirmed a fresh takeover bid by a consortium led by former CEO Sipho Maseko, through Afrifund Investments.

The consortium, which comprises of Afrifund, the Public Investment Corporation – Africa’s largest asset manager, and Mauritius-based Axian Telecom, is bidding for 35% stake in Telkom.

Telkom today notified shareholders of the bid in response to recent media articles, which speculated on the proposed transaction.

In a statement, Telkom says it has requested the consortium to provide further clarity on several matters, including the proposed offer price and certainty of funding.

“The company confirms that it has received an unsolicited non-binding indicative letter from the consortium for the acquisition of a controlling stake in Telkom, the merits of which are being assessed by the Telkom board of directors, in accordance with its fiduciary duties,” the statement reads.

However, the telephony company says the discussions remain of an exploratory and non-consensual nature.

“There being no certainty that the outcome of these discussions will result in a transaction,” says Telkom.

The bid by the consortium is the third attempt in the past 12 months to control Telkom assets.

Mobile data-only network Rain and Africa’s biggest telecom group MTN have both previously tried and failed to acquire Telkom.

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