Telenor monetizes its online classifieds investment in Latam - strengthens ownership in Asia

Press release
3 minute read
Telenor ASA has on 11 May 2017 entered into an agreement with Schibsted ASA regarding its joint ventures within online classifieds, whereby Telenor exits the Latin American joint venture (SnT) and acquires Schibsted’s stake in the joint ventures in Malaysia, Vietnam, and Myanmar (701 Search). Net proceeds to Telenor from the transaction with Schibsted will be USD 406 million (approx. NOK 3.4 billion).
In addition, Telenor has entered into an agreement with Singapore Press Holdings to acquire their share in the online classifieds sites in Malaysia, Vietnam and Myanmar for USD 110 million (approx. NOK 0.9 billion).

Following these transactions, Telenor will own 100 % of the leading online classifieds services Mudah (Malaysia), Chotot (Vietnam), OneKyat (Myanmar) and ImSold (Malaysia and Vietnam). Telenor, Schibsted, Naspers and Singapore Press Holdings will remain partners in the online classifieds assets in Thailand and Indonesia.

Telenor entered into agreements with Schibsted and Singapore Press Holdings in 2013 to create joint ventures within online classifieds in Latin America and Asia. In 2015, the partners joined forces with Naspers to combine platforms in several markets, including Brazil. Following this, Telenor’s ownership in the online classifieds joint ventures has been 25 % in Brazil, 50 % in Chile, 33.3 % in Malaysia and Vietnam, 18.6 % in Thailand, and 11.3 % in Indonesia.

“Today’s transactions show that we have been able to create solid value from our online classifieds investments. We have had a good co-operation with our partners since we teamed up in 2013. However, as part of our efforts to simplify Telenor Group’s business portfolio and to focus on business development in geographical areas of key importance, we now wish to concentrate our online classifieds initiatives to these fully owned assets in the Asian region,” says Jørgen C. Arentz Rostrup, Chief Financial Officer in Telenor Group.

The transactions are expected to close by end of June 2017. In Telenor Group’s financial reporting for the second quarter 2017, a gain of NOK 3.5 billion will be booked related to the disposals and an impairment of NOK 0.3 billion will be booked relating to the Asian assets. The transactions will give a net positive cash contribution of around NOK 2.5 billion in the second quarter of 2017.

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