Kenyan government strikes a deal with France Telecom

Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

A stand-off between the Kenyan government and France Telekom - its fellow shareholder in Telkom Kenya - has been resolved after three months of disputes, reports the East African newspaper. France Telecom, which purchased 51% of the previously state-owned Telkom Kenya for USD390 million back in November 2007, threatened to withdraw its investment after a failure to trace certain assets that were in the books at the time of purchase.

A joint statement from Treasury Permanent Secretary Joseph Kinyua and Michel Barre of France Telecom read: ‘The Government of Kenya and Orange East Africa SA, a subsidiary of France Telecom SA, are pleased to announce that they have resolved the outstanding shareholder issues regarding the privatisation of Telkom Kenya in December 2007’.

The shareholders said they will now focus on enhancing their partnership, in order to make the company a world-class player for the benefit of its customers and other stakeholders. The statement added: ‘France Telecom Group further confirms its commitment to Kenya as a long-term strategic investor through its participation in Telkom Kenya, which it continues to support through its global ‘Orange’ brand. The Group will continue to provide strategic and technical expertise in order to transform the company and develop innovative products and services’.