ECONOMY

In Brief

PPC sets up holding company for business ventures abroad Electricity utility Public Power Corporation (PPC) has set up a holding company with energy firm ContourGlobal LLC to explore buyout opportunities in the neighboring region, its chief executive said yesterday. «PPC will own 45 percent (of the company) and ContourGlobal another 45 percent. Institutional investors such as the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development have expressed interest in the remaining 10 percent,» CEO Dimitris Maniatakis told shareholders at the annual assembly. He said the joint venture will have capital of 600 million euros ($769.8 million), with PPC’s share amounting to 270 million euros over the next five to seven years. In March, PPC had said it would form a strategic consortium with New York-based ContourGlobal to bid for a lignite-fired generating plant and coal mine in Montenegro. The utility has earmarked 500 million euros for acquisitions abroad in the face of rising competition in its domestic market. (Reuters) Turkey completes Telsim sale to Vodafone ANKARA (Reuters) – Turkey’s telecommunications board and Vodafone Group Plc have signed a concession contract, completing the sale of mobile phone firm Telsim to the British company, a board official told Reuters yesterday. Last December, Vodafone, the world’s biggest mobile services provider by revenue, outbid rivals including cash-rich Middle Eastern companies to buy Telsim, Turkey’s second-biggest mobile operator. The concession, granted for a fixed period of time, is needed to operate a telecommunications company in Turkey. It was not immediately known for how long Vodafone has been granted the concession. «The concession contract has been signed between Vodafone and the TK (the board) and has entered into force,» the official told Reuters. Earlier this month, Turkey’s top administrative court approved Vodafone’s $4.55 billion takeover of Telsim, clearing the last major hurdle to the sale. Approval had been held up by the process of electing a new chairman for the court. Turkey’s competition board approved the Telsim sale in January. Telecom bond The board at telecoms company OTE decided yesterday to guarantee a bond that its mobile arm Cosmote will issue to fund the purchase of phone accessory retailer Germanos. The guarantee will be for a loan of up to 1.6 billion euros ($2.05 billion), OTE said in a statement. Earlier this month, Cosmote agreed to buy 42 percent of Germanos for 651 million euros ($835.2 million) to boost its earnings and distribution power at home and in the Balkans. At 19 euros a share, the deal valued Germanos at 1.55 billion euros. The country’s largest mobile phone service provider by users aims to acquire the rest of Germanos via a public tender offer in September at the same price of 19 euros per share. Cosmote said it had appointed JPMorgan Chase and Citibank as underwriters. (Reuters)