By Stelios Orphanides
The state-owned Cyprus Telecommunication Authority (Cyta) said that Greece’s Vodafon-Panafon Hellenic Communications S.A. emerged as the preferred bidder to acquire its loss-making unit CytaHellas.
Greece’s PricewaterhouseCooper Business Solutions acted financial advisors while Greece’s Bernitsas Law Firm and the Nicosia-based Georgiades and Pelides Law Firm acted as Cyta’s legal advisors in the said transactions, the Cypriot telecom said in a statement on its website. The statement made no reference to the price of the transaction.
Cyta invested via its subsidiary DigiMed a total of €194.5m into CytaHellas, which generated a loss totalling €165.3m since its incorporation in 2007 to 2016, according to the auditor general.
The other bidder was Greece’s Wind Hellas. DigiMed owns 94.8 per cent of CytaHellas and Cyta owns the remaining 5.2 per cent directly.
At the end of 2016, it had 306,800 customers for its fixed-line services and 43,200 users of mobile telephony plus 5,995 subscribers of Cytavision.
In 2016, it posted a €18.9m pre-tax loss compared to a pre-tax loss of €3m in 2015. Its turnover fell in 2016, to €90.8m from €107.8m the year before.
Vodafone-Panafon generated a net loss of €29.5m compared to a net loss of €126.7m in the previous financial year, the company said on its website.