The first ever merger in Bangladesh’s telecommunication sector has come into effect with the beginning of commercial operation of Robi as a single entity yesterday.
Following the amalgamation of Robi and Airtel, the merger will be known as Robi Axiata Limited.
Earlier on October 18, BTRC gave the go-ahead to the long-awaited merger of Robi Axiata Ltd and Airtel Bangladesh Ltd.
On August 31, the High Court approved the merger of two mobile phone giants in the country.
As the country’s largest merger, Axiata now holds 68.7% controlling stake in the combined entity while Bharti, parent company of Airtel, holds 25%. The remaining 6.3% will be held by the existing shareholder, NTT DOCOMO of Japan.
The combined entity will operate under the brand name of Robi Axiata Limited and will serve approximately 32.2 million subscribers.
The joint strength of Robi and Airtel sets the stage for creating a number one cellular network with widest coverage across Bangladesh, enhancing its stronghold in the mobile internet segment as well as consolidating its position as the second largest operator in the country.
Mahtab Uddin Ahmed, managing director and chief executive officer of Robi, said: “We are pleased to have reached the completion phase of the merger with Airtel. We are grateful and offer our utmost appreciation for the support of several parties, particularly our shareholders, the ministry of Posts and Telecommunications, Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission, as well as Robi and Airtel consumers, all of whom made this merger possible.”
Tan Sri Jamaludin Ibrahim, president and group chief executive officer of Axiata, said: “Axiata’s proven track record of successful strategic mergers and integrations in our other markets such as Indonesia, Sri Lanka and Cambodia has qualified the group to lead the first telecom merger and initiate the market consolidation in Bangladesh.
On January 29, Robi and Airtel signed a merger agreement in Kuala Lumpur to venture into a joint business operation in Bangladesh. The joint venture will be named Robi.
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