On The Money - In Brief

Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

- Six companies have placed a bid to acquire a 35% stake in Tunisia's largest telecommunications carrier Tunisie Telecom. The partial privatisation of Tunisie Telecom estimated at around EUR1.5 billion has attracted bids from French companies France Telecom and Vivendi Universal; South African group Mobil Telephone Networks; United Arab Emirates' Etisalat and Tecom Co. - all of whom have put in separate offers. Telecom Italia and Saudi Oger Ltd. have made a common offer, the Ministry said. Financial offers will be examined in the second half of March in the presence of all the bidders but the name of the winner will only be known in about three months, the Ministry said. There could also be an auction if the offers are within 10% of each other, the Ministry added.

- Gabon Telecom which has again been put up for privatisation for 51% stake in the company has not received offers from both France Telecom and Vivendi Universal which have just announced their interest in  bidding for a stake in Tunisie Telecom.