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“Tunisie Telecom” (TT) had made an economic and financial break-through in 2010 by initiating procedures for its listing on the Tunis Stock Exchange and the European Stock Exchange Euronext. However, the Revolution had stopped short this momentum.

 

New CEO of the incumbent operator, Nizar Bouguila, has just re-launched it with the support of the Prime Minister.

 

For this purpose, TT will soon begin to update the reference document that it had introduced to the Financial Market Council (CMF) in 2009 and submit a new application for the IPO. All this should not go beyond the end of the 1st quarter of 2017, if not before, according to our sources. There are three significant information about this upcoming listing on the Stock Exchange.

 

* First, the fact that the current strategic partner of TT, Emirati EIT, which currently holds 35% of the capital of TT and that has repeatedly expressed its desire to disengage, would also agree on this listing.

 

* The second is that the listing will be done on both stock markets. First, the Tunis Stock Exchange and at the same time European Euronext. It must be said, in this regard, that one of the main objectives of TT’s IPO which is a decision of the State, shareholder at 65% of TT, is to provide it with financial resources in both dinars and foreign currency.

 

TT is therefore banking on the introduction of a total of 30% of the capital, between the state and EIT, that is to say 20% of the Tunisian State and 10% of EIT. From this 30%, the idea is, according to our sources, is to put 10% on the Tunis Stock Exchange and 20% on Euronext.

 

But at this point, we should note that the detail of this introduction is not yet official.

 

* The third information is that part of the capital to be put on the stock exchange from the share of the state should be given to employees of TT. The decision-making arrangements are not clear at this point, although it is known that it would emanate from a genuine desire from both the general management of TT and the government to set up an employee shareholding.

 

This new concept is actually part of the TT recovery strategy. That strategy includes the development of a new status for TT, a status that combines the public and private nature with a voluntary private bridge between the two, through an establishment agreement with its social partner, UGTT.

 

What is certain and beyond the cash flow needs that such IPO would provide to the state, this listing is a necessary part of the recovery strategy and development of TT initiated by new CEO, Nizar Bouguila.

 

Tunisie Telecom, the operator that weighs 1.2 billion TD

As of today, TT is a turnover of 1.2 billion TD (against 1.317 billion TD in 2009) and an EBTIDA (gross operating income) of 453 MTD against 391.8 MTD in 2009.

 

Universal and historic operator TT, which no longer has the same market share it had prior to the entry of Orange, is also a mobile market share of 36.5% and a virtual monopoly on fixed telephony despite the entry of two other operators that are still timid.

 

But the “Tunisie Telecom” Group also includes Topnet, owned at 99% by Tunisie Telecom. Topnet, Internet service provider and market leader in Tunisia was acquired in June 2010.

 

– Tunisian Telecommunication Enterprises “Sotetel”, 35% owned by Tunisie Telecom.

 

– Mauritanian-Tunisian Telecom Company («Mattel”), 51% owned by Tunisie Telecom; – Investment Company DIVA SICAR, 85% owned by Tunisie Telecom.

Tunisie Telecom also owns 37% stake in the Tunisian Internet Agency and a number of investments in companies that provide it with additional services, or have a strategic opportunity for its development, including 1.52% capital of the “Banque de l’Habitat”, listed on the Tunis Stock Exchange. The revenues of subsidiaries represented 9.5%, 9.9%, 7.6% of the consolidated turnover of Tunisie Telecom, respectively, for the years ended December 31, 2007, 2008 and 2009. There have been no financial information ever since, but this will change.

 

Furthermore, as part of its support to the development of the new technologies sector, Tunisie Telecom and its subsidiary Diva SICAR have pledged to create a management company, a “techno-city” in Sousse that should be provided with cutting-edge technological infrastructure.

 

At the date of this annual report, the company is being set up and should be created soon. Tunisie Telecom and Diva SICAR would hold 50% and 40% stake in this company, respectively.

 

The Tunisie Telecom Group is the number one exporter of know-how in telecommunications and the main actor in several major international projects in close collaboration with partners such as “Thuraya, RASCOM, SEA-ME-WE4. It is all this that will make the good valorization of the operator for the IPO and that will certainly attract local and foreign investors to a company that wins and a still buoyant sector.

 

GO, the € 150-million operator will be maintained on the Malta Stock Exchange?

To all the group, now is added Maltese operator GO, of which TT has acquired 60% through tender, an acquisition that will certainly be one of the strengths of a very good stock market valuation of TT.

 

Indeed, Maltese GO is a turnover of €15 million, an EBITDA of € 60 million, a Net-Profit of an annual average of 13 million (€ 24 million the last year thanks to an exceptional situation), a

 

mobile market share of 39%, 66% for the fixed telephony, 10% for the cloud, 50% for the Data, and as much for Internet TV which is popular among the Maltese public.

 

TT has acquired 60% of it at € 175 million, that is to say 2.87 €/share action. As required by law, TT is subject to another bid, voluntary one, to eventually collect the remaining 40% of GO Capital. We also learnt that to finance this acquisition, TT was able to raise € 300 million on the international market, without the need for any state guarantee. This is a sign of an extremely healthy financial position.

 

Moreover, a source close to the operator told African Manager that TT intends to maintain GO as a public listed company on the Maltese Stock Exchange. It is strongly committed to developing it and working to make Maltese investors participate in the development of this operator that will become the sign of a successful joint venture between the two countries and the two economies.

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