Monday, December 3rd 2012 - 20:36 UTC

Cable and Wireless Monaco and Islands division sold to Bahrain Telecoms

Cable and Wireless Communications have announced the sale of the majority of its Monaco and Islands division which includes the Falklands. The company has accepted 680m dollars (£420m) from Bahrain Telecommunications Company (Batelco) for the division which operates broadband and telephone lines.

C&W earth station at Stanley, Falklands

Monaco and Islands operates services in the Channel Islands, Falkland Islands and the Maldives among other areas.

Tony Rice, CEO of Cable and Wireless Communications, said the move was part of a focus on growth in the Americas.

The sale includes all operations in the Maldives, Isle of Man, Channel Islands, Seychelles, Diego Garcia and South Atlantic islands, as well as part of its holdings in Monaco.

Sheikh Mohamed bin Isa Al Khalifa, chief executive of Batelco, said the company would invest in the islands' telecommunications.

He said: “[It] is a well-managed business that we want to invest in so that it continues to build upon its existing strengths.”

The sale will need to pass final regulatory conditions, and is expected to be complete by the end of the financial year.

State-controlled Batelco, which has little debt, has reported falling profit in nine of the past 10 quarters and this slump has led it to expand abroad, although its moves had been limited to Middle Eastern countries like Jordan, Yemen, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.

The deal also includes a 25% shareholding in Compagnie Monagesque de Communications (CMC), which holds CWC a 55% interest in Monaco Telecom. Monaco Telecom in turn holds a 36.8% stake in Roshan, a mobile phone operator in Afghanistan.

The total price for these transactions is 680 million, Batelco said on Monday, adding it had appointed BNP Paribas and Citigroup to help it raise up to $1 billion though a bond issue and a loan facility.

In a separate statement, CWC said the Batelco deal would cut its debt to 937 million. The operator is also in talks to sell a majority stake in Macau’s largest telecom group.

“Our strategy to expand in Central America and the Caribbean is predicated on really moving out of all aspect of the eastern part of our business, so Monaco and the Islands and Macau,” said CWC finance director Tim Pennington.

11 comments Feed

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1 briton (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 08:50 pm Report abuse
why cant the BBC do it.
2 LEPRecon (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 09:14 pm Report abuse
Oh no! I thought that Bahrain supported Argentina's spurious claims on the Falklands! Oh wait, no they never had.

I wonder if Argentina will try to take them to court.

@1 Briton

The Falklands deserve a decent company, the BBC has been falling short in that area in spades.

The Falklanders will probably be able to get the BBC, although I'll admit I'm a little ignorant of exactly what service they get now.

Any Falklanders, how is this going to affect you? Do you get BFBS? BBC? Sky?

Will the service be improved under this new management?

Awaiting your comments (RG trolls need not reply).
3 Joe Bloggs (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 09:56 pm Report abuse
2 LEPRecon

We get BFBS and Chilean-sourced satellite TV plus one locally produced station. I don't know how this deal will affect us. Time will tell.
4 LEPRecon (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 10:09 pm Report abuse
@3 Joe

Thanks for that. Hopefully this company, being from Bahrain, may throw abit more money at the company, and your viewing choice could be increased.

I hear CFK does a good stand up routine in Argentina every night! WAH, WAH, waaahhh! ;)
5 Joe Bloggs (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 10:35 pm Report abuse
4 LEPRecon

Thanks. I'll keep you posted on how it goes.

I'm not normally one to post the same thing on more than one thread but since you mentioned stand-up, did you see this clip? At first I thought it was our friend Whatsit Nozzy the 2nd TiT but it could be any number of them really.

6 WestisBest (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 09:27 am Report abuse

Since when was the BBC a telecommunication provider?
7 briton (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 02:15 pm Report abuse
6, i did not say it was,
did eye,,
2, you may be right,
living in the uk, we dont know,
im surprised the Americans aint doing something, they seem to be everywhere,
should not the falklands ,,in this day and age, have what we have,
8 WestisBest (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 02:53 pm Report abuse

Sorry I'll clarify it; Cable and Wireless Falklands provide phone and internet services, we don't have any access to any other telecommunication deals such as Sky can offer, AFAIK the BBC don't offer any such service anyway.

As far as television goes we can get the military service (BFBS 1 & 2 and sky news) and a satellite service via Chilean providers (not sure exactly what you get with that), neither of these services has anything to do with Cable and Wireless so this won't detract from what we can currently get on the tele.

As for the telecoms we'll wait and see, could be interesting.
9 briton (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 07:05 pm Report abuse

but we still think you could have better.
10 WestisBest (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 01:09 am Report abuse
Better telecoms would be great. Not sure we need better TV mind, we Falkland Islanders are as square eyed as any developed nation even with our limited television services.

Such is progress.
11 briton (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 12:35 pm Report abuse

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