France Telecom buys Alcazar Capital’s stake in Orange Kenya

France Telecom now has a 60 percent stake in Orange Kenya after it purchased the 11 percent shares owned by Alcazar Capital, the company said. France Telecom did not disclose the amount made in the purchase.

France Telecom has a 60 percent stake in Orange Kenya following the purchase of shares owned by Alcazar Capital. (Image: File)

Local reports also said that the French giant has replaced Alcazar’s CEO Charbel Jaoude on Orange Kenya’s board as part of the overhaul and purchase.

The two companies had jointly acquired Orange East Africa in 2007, changing the name to Orange Kenya as a special vehicle.

The acquisition also gives France Telecom more liquidity and mobility in the fast-growing mobile sector in East Africa.

According to Tom Wright, France Telecom’s press officer, “Alcazar was no longer an indirect shareholder of Orange Kenya since mid-2012 when France Telecom-Orange acquired Alcazar’s stake in the holding company OREA (Orange East Africa).”

Alcazar had gained the stake after paying $83 million of the $390 million that the consortium led by France Telecom had offered for purchase of the 51 percent stake in Orange Kenya.

A recent restructuring plan cut their stake in Orange Kenya to 40 percent from 49 percent and raised France Telecom’s stake to 60 percent. The French firm also wrote off debt to the Kenyan subsidiary for KES 15 billion.

 Mohammed Awad

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