Tunisie Telecom set for dual listing
Beirut, October 26, 2010
Tunisian mobile network operator, Tunisie Telecom, plans a dual listing by the end of this year on local exchange and a European bourse, said the head of Tunis stock exchange.
"Tunisie Telecom will be listed before the end of the year. The listing will be on the Tunis bourse and a European bourse," Mohamed Bichiou, chief executive officer of the Tunis stock exchange, told Reuters without specifying which European exchange.
He said the Tunisian state would contribute 10 percent of the company's shares, while the other 10 percent would come from United Arab Emirates shareholders.
The operator is majority owned by the state while Dubai''s Tecom Investments and Dubai Investment Group jointly hold 35 per cent.
Last month Tunisia sold a third-generation (3G) mobile telecoms licence to Tunisie Telecom for about $80 million, putting it in competition with France Telecom's local unit.
Bichiou said four companies have already been listed on the Tunisian board this year and a new company will be listed 'within 10 days'. He said more companies will be listed in 2011.
'We are working with the private sector to list some of the private companies. You can say we (have a plan) to list a company every 45 days,' he said.
Asked whether more dual listings will be considered soon Bichiou said: 'We are moving with this step by step until we are sure that the operation is successful so that the companies who are doing the listing can be sure that this is a successful operation.'
Tunisia has one of the region's most developed and stable economies. It has a population of 10.5 million people and mobile penetration of 90 per cent.
Tunisian transport firm Ennakl floated a 10 per cent stake on the Moroccan bourse and 30 per cent on the Tunis exchange in July.
Tunisia plans to ease some restrictions on the movement of capital in preparation for a planned switch to a fully convertible currency in 2014.
Financial analysts say Tunisia could unleash a surge in investment, especially into its stock market, if it eases or removes currency controls.-Reuters