Singapore Telecommunications (Singtel) intends to reduce 3.3% of its own stake in Bharti Airtel by selling it to Bharti Telecom Ltd. This deal is expected to raise approximately S$2.25bn ($1.6bn). Singtel intends to use the proceeds to fund its 5G operations and expansions. After the deal, Singtel is expected to possess an effective stake of 29.7% in Bharti Airtel and have a net gain of approximately S$600mn ($431mn). Singtel has been organizing its portfolio as it focuses on 5G operations and seeks new growth engines. Singtel is letting go an advertising platform and is said to be considering selling off its cyber security business known as Trustwave Holdings and a probable stake sale in some fiber assets. Besides using the proceeds to fund Singtel’s 5G operations and growth in the next few years, this deal will “put us in a strong position to grow our dividends in a sustainable way,” said Arthur Lang, Singtel’s CFO. He also added that Singtel “remain committed long-term investors having invested approximately S$1.3bn in Airtel over the last three years”.
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