Zambia minority shareholders sue against Bharti delisting
Minority shareholders in Bharti Airtel's Zambian unit have sued the company, seeking to block its planned delisting from the local bourse. India's Bharti Airtel said last month that it plans to delist the Zambian unit even after the local bourse rejected the initial proposal.
"The failure to comply with the Companies Act renders the subsequent acquisition notice impotent and without validity," the court document said.
Bharti had applied to delist Celtel Zambia following a mandatory offer to buy out minority shareholders that raised its shareholding to almost 97 percent. The minority shareholders said in an affidavit filed in court on Wednesday that they refused to sell their stake in the company because they were unhappy with the terms and price.
Bharti had not disclosed the price at which it bought the shares in the Zambian unit, making it difficult for minority shareholders to decide on the matter, they said.
The minorities also said Bharti did not offer them the option to acquire shares in the company or its Zambian unit as required by the Zambian law. Bharti said after the bourse rejected its application that it was talking to the Securities and Exchange Commission and hoped the Exchange would grant it permission to delist.