Click here to close now.


Mobile IoT Authors: Elizabeth White, Tim Fujita-Yuhas, Pat Romanski, Lori MacVittie, Liz McMillan

News Feed Item

VimpelCom And Global Telecom Holding Announce A Strategic Partnership With The Algerian Fonds National d'Investissement And A Successful Resolution In Algeria

AMSTERDAM and CAIRO, April 18, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- VimpelCom Ltd ("VimpelCom") (NASDAQ: VIP) and Global Telecom Holding S.A.E. ("GTH") (EGX: GTHE, LSE: GLTD) today announce the signing of a share purchase agreement (the "Share Purchase Agreement") for the sale by GTH of a 51% interest in Orascom Telecom Algerie SpA ("OTA" or "Djezzy") to the Fonds National d'Investissement (the "FNI"), the Algerian National Investment Fund, for a purchase consideration of USD 2.643 billion.

OTA will distribute a dividend of USD 1.862 billion to GTH immediately prior to the closing of the transaction ("Closing"), which is expected to occur by the end of 2014.

The total dividends and proceeds due to GTH at Closing are expected to amount to USD 4.0 billion, net of all taxes and after the settlement of all outstanding disputes between the parties and the payment of associated fines. All proceeds will be used to pay down the outstanding shareholder loans provided by VimpelCom to GTH.

GTH and the FNI will enter into a shareholders agreement ("the Shareholders Agreement"), effective as of Closing, which will govern their relationship as shareholders in OTA going forward. GTH will continue to exercise operational control over OTA and, as a result, both GTH and VimpelCom will continue to fully consolidate OTA. This partnership with the FNI provides OTA with a strong and stable shareholder structure on which to build and strengthen its operations in Algeria.

Jo Lunder, Chief Executive Officer of VimpelCom, commented: "This favorable long-term agreement and settlement represents a successful outcome for all stakeholders. For VimpelCom and GTH, this value accretive transaction releases USD 4.0 billion in cash proceeds to pay down gross debt. For GTH and Djezzy, it resolves our dispute in Algeria and allows us to solidify our strong leadership position in Algeria by enabling us to further invest in a high speed 3G network to take full advantage of the potential for mobile data growth in the country. We look forward to working with our new partner, the Algerian National Investment Fund, to drive the business forward and to create significant long-term value for all of our stakeholders in line with our strategic Value Agenda."

The terms of the Share Purchase Agreement and the Shareholders Agreement have been approved by the Algerian Conseil des Participations de l'Etat, the Conseil de Direction of the FNI, the VimpelCom Supervisory Board and the Global Telecom Holding Board of Directors.

Prior to Closing and in order to facilitate the Closing OTA will contribute its operations (the "Contribution") to Optimum Telecom Algerie S.p.A. ("Optimum"), a wholly-owned subsidiary of OTA. In addition, at or prior to closing, Optimum intends to establish a credit facility with a syndicate of local banks in an amount of up to 82 billion dinars (approximately USD 1.0 billion).

Shareholders Agreement

GTH and the FNI along with VimpelCom, OTA and Optimum will enter into the Shareholders Agreement at Closing to govern the relationship of GTH and the FNI as shareholders and partners in OTA and the operations of Optimum.

Pursuant to the Shareholders Agreement, GTH and VimpelCom will continue to fully consolidate OTA. GTH will retain operational control over each of OTA and Optimum with certain enumerated strategic decisions being subject to a supermajority vote of the respective boards (including the affirmative vote of at least one director representing GTH and the FNI). OTA will pay future dividends to its shareholders out of available free cash flow, targeting a pay-out ratio of not less than 42.5% of consolidated net income.

Transfers of the parties' respective shareholdings in OTA are not permitted during the first 7 years following the Closing other than to certain affiliates. Each of GTH and the FNI will have a put option and call option, respectively, at fair market value on GTH's OTA shares on the 7th anniversary of Closing, as well as upon the occurrence of certain specific events.

Settlement of Disputes

The foreign exchange and import restrictions put in place by the Bank of Algeria against OTA on April 15, 2010 will be lifted on Closing, following the payment by OTA to the Algerian Treasury of the fine of 99 billion Algerian dinars (equivalent to approximately USD 1.3 billion). At Closing, OTA will definitively discontinue (with no admission of wrongdoing or liability) all pending related proceedings.

At Closing, OTA will definitively discontinue (with no admission of wrongdoing or liability) all pending proceedings relating to the disputes with the Algerian tax administration relating to tax reassessments for the years 2004 to 2009. OTA will write off in its accounts the related tax receivable in its balance sheet.

As a result of the settlement of these disputes, both GTH and VimpelCom will take a one-off charge of USD 2.0 billion in their 2013 Financial Statements.

Upon signing of the Share Purchase Agreement, GTH suspended its current arbitration against the Algerian State initiated on April 12, 2012 and, upon Closing, the parties to the arbitration will settle the arbitration and all claims relating thereto.

Agreement with OTA's minority shareholder Cevital

In addition, Cevital S.p.A. ("Cevital"), which holds just over 3% of OTA shares, has signed a Framework Agreement with GTH under which the existing OTA shareholder arrangements will be terminated and GTH will acquire Cevital's OTA shares. In exchange for a purchase consideration of USD 178 million (equivalent to the implied price at which the FNI is acquiring its 51% stake) and the right to USD 56 million from OTA's pre-Closing dividend, GTH will transfer to Cevital the shares of a wholly-owned subsidiary which will hold five year convertible bonds issued by VimpelCom in the principal amount of USD 234 million. The VimpelCom bonds will pay interest at an annual rate of 3.75% and will be convertible into VimpelCom ADSs at a conversion price equal to a premium of 40% above the prevailing ADS price at the time of issue.

As part of the Cevital transaction, GTH will grant Cevital a right to purchase 3.43% of OTA shares for a fixed amount of USD 178 million. Such right may be exercised on the 5th anniversary of Closing (as well as upon the occurrence of certain specific events prior to that time) or at any time between the 5th and 7th anniversaries of Closing. The Cevital transaction is conditional upon negotiation and execution of definitive documentation, receipt of requisite governmental approvals and on Closing of the transaction with the FNI. VimpelCom will guarantee the obligations of GTH in the Cevital transaction. In case the Closing does not take place, GTH and Cevital have also agreed in principle to negotiate agreements under which GTH will pay Cevital 3.43% of the net amount, if any, collected by GTH in the arbitration against the Algerian State in exchange for Cevital transferring all of its OTA shares to GTH and terminating the current OTA shareholder arrangements.


The conditions precedent to Closing include, amongst others, the completion of the Contribution, Optimum obtaining the credit facility of up to 82 billion Algerian dinars (equivalent to approximately USD 1.0 billion), the payment of the pre-Closing dividend of USD 1.862 billion to GTH, the irrevocable termination of the existing shareholders agreement entered into with Cevital, the receipt of necessary approvals by the shareholders of GTH and the receipt of necessary regulatory approvals by the Algerian authorities. The parties expect Closing to occur by the end of 2014.


This announcement contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements are statements that are not historical facts, and include statements regarding the possible transactions described above and the expected benefits of such transactions. Any statement in this announcement that expresses or implies VimpelCom's or GTH's intentions, beliefs, expectations or predictions (and the assumptions underlying them) is a forward-looking statement. Forward-looking statements involve inherent risks, uncertainties and assumptions, including, without limitation, the possibility that the transactions may not materialize as expected or at all. If such risks or uncertainties materialize or such assumptions prove incorrect, actual results could differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements and assumptions. Certain other risks that could cause actual results to differ materially from those discussed in any forward-looking statements include the risk factors described in VimpelCom's Annual Report on Form 20-F for the year ended December 31, 2012, and other public filings made by the VimpelCom with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, which risk factors are incorporated herein by reference. The forward-looking statements contained in this announcement are made as of the date hereof, and VimpelCom and GTH expressly disclaim any obligation to update or correct any forward-looking statements made herein due to the occurrence of events after the issuance of this announcement.

About VimpelCom
VimpelCom is one of the world's largest integrated telecommunications services operators providing voice and data services through a range of traditional and broadband mobile and fixed technologies in Russia, Italy, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Armenia, Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Algeria, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Burundi, Zimbabwe, Central African Republic and Canada. VimpelCom's operations around the globe cover territory with a total population of approximately 753 million people. As of December 31, 2013 VimpelCom had 220 million mobile customers. VimpelCom Ltd. is headquartered in Amsterdam, the Netherlands and listed as an ADS on the NASDAQ Global Stock Market under the symbol "VIP".

About Global Telecom Holding
GTH, which is 51.9% owned by VimpelCom, is a leading international telecommunications company operating mobile networks in high growth markets in the Middle East, Africa and Asia and North America, having a total population under license of approximately 459 million with an average mobile telephony penetration of approximately 57% as of December 31, 2013. GTH operates mobile networks in Algeria ("OTA"), Pakistan ("Mobilink"), and Bangladesh ("banglalink"), and has an indirect equity shareholding in Globalive Wireless Canada ("WIND Mobile"). In addition it has an indirect equity ownership in Telecel Zimbabwe (Zimbabwe) and through its subsidiary Telecel Globe. GTH also operates in Burundi and the Central African Republic. GTH reached more than 89 million customers as of December 31, 2013. GTH is traded on the Egyptian Exchange under the symbol (GTHE.CA), and on the London Stock Exchange, its GDRs are traded under the symbol (GLTD:LI).

About Orascom Telecom Algerie (Djezzy)
Djezzy operates a mobile network in Algeria and provides a range of prepaid and postpaid products encompassing voice, data and multimedia. In 2013, Djezzy recorded USD 1.796 billion of revenue and USD 1.054 billion of EBITDA. As of December 31, 2013, Djezzy's network served 17.6 million customers, representing a market share of approximately 53% of total mobile customers in Algeria.

SOURCE VimpelCom Ltd.

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

@ThingsExpo Stories
The buzz continues for cloud, data analytics and the Internet of Things (IoT) and their collective impact across all industries. But a new conversation is emerging - how do companies use industry disruption and technology enablers to lead in markets undergoing change, uncertainty and ambiguity? Organizations of all sizes need to evolve and transform, often under massive pressure, as industry lines blur and merge and traditional business models are assaulted and turned upside down. In this new data-driven world, marketplaces reign supreme while interoperability, APIs and applications deliver un...
The Internet of Things (IoT) is growing rapidly by extending current technologies, products and networks. By 2020, Cisco estimates there will be 50 billion connected devices. Gartner has forecast revenues of over $300 billion, just to IoT suppliers. Now is the time to figure out how you’ll make money – not just create innovative products. With hundreds of new products and companies jumping into the IoT fray every month, there’s no shortage of innovation. Despite this, McKinsey/VisionMobile data shows "less than 10 percent of IoT developers are making enough to support a reasonably sized team....
There are so many tools and techniques for data analytics that even for a data scientist the choices, possible systems, and even the types of data can be daunting. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Harrold, Global CTO for Big Data Solutions for EMC Corporation, will show how to perform a simple, but meaningful analysis of social sentiment data using freely available tools that take only minutes to download and install. Participants will get the download information, scripts, and complete end-to-end walkthrough of the analysis from start to finish. Participants will also be given the pract...
Today’s connected world is moving from devices towards things, what this means is that by using increasingly low cost sensors embedded in devices we can create many new use cases. These span across use cases in cities, vehicles, home, offices, factories, retail environments, worksites, health, logistics, and health. These use cases rely on ubiquitous connectivity and generate massive amounts of data at scale. These technologies enable new business opportunities, ways to optimize and automate, along with new ways to engage with users.
The IoT market is on track to hit $7.1 trillion in 2020. The reality is that only a handful of companies are ready for this massive demand. There are a lot of barriers, paint points, traps, and hidden roadblocks. How can we deal with these issues and challenges? The paradigm has changed. Old-style ad-hoc trial-and-error ways will certainly lead you to the dead end. What is mandatory is an overarching and adaptive approach to effectively handle the rapid changes and exponential growth.
Internet of Things (IoT) will be a hybrid ecosystem of diverse devices and sensors collaborating with operational and enterprise systems to create the next big application. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Bramh Gupta, founder and CEO of, and Fred Yatzeck, principal architect leading product development at, discussed how choosing the right middleware and integration strategy from the get-go will enable IoT solution developers to adapt and grow with the industry, while at the same time reduce Time to Market (TTM) by using plug and play capabilities offered by a robust IoT ...
Mobile messaging has been a popular communication channel for more than 20 years. Finnish engineer Matti Makkonen invented the idea for SMS (Short Message Service) in 1984, making his vision a reality on December 3, 1992 by sending the first message ("Happy Christmas") from a PC to a cell phone. Since then, the technology has evolved immensely, from both a technology standpoint, and in our everyday uses for it. Originally used for person-to-person (P2P) communication, i.e., Sally sends a text message to Betty – mobile messaging now offers tremendous value to businesses for customer and empl...
Can call centers hang up the phones for good? Intuitive Solutions did. WebRTC enabled this contact center provider to eliminate antiquated telephony and desktop phone infrastructure with a pure web-based solution, allowing them to expand beyond brick-and-mortar confines to a home-based agent model. It also ensured scalability and better service for customers, including MUY! Companies, one of the country's largest franchise restaurant companies with 232 Pizza Hut locations. This is one example of WebRTC adoption today, but the potential is limitless when powered by IoT.
You have your devices and your data, but what about the rest of your Internet of Things story? Two popular classes of technologies that nicely handle the Big Data analytics for Internet of Things are Apache Hadoop and NoSQL. Hadoop is designed for parallelizing analytical work across many servers and is ideal for the massive data volumes you create with IoT devices. NoSQL databases such as Apache HBase are ideal for storing and retrieving IoT data as “time series data.”
Clearly the way forward is to move to cloud be it bare metal, VMs or containers. One aspect of the current public clouds that is slowing this cloud migration is cloud lock-in. Every cloud vendor is trying to make it very difficult to move out once a customer has chosen their cloud. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Naveen Nimmu, CEO of Clouber, Inc., will advocate that making the inter-cloud migration as simple as changing airlines would help the entire industry to quickly adopt the cloud without worrying about any lock-in fears. In fact by having standard APIs for IaaS would help PaaS expl...
NHK, Japan Broadcasting, will feature the upcoming @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley in a special 'Internet of Things' and smart technology documentary that will be filmed on the expo floor between November 3 to 5, 2015, in Santa Clara. NHK is the sole public TV network in Japan equivalent to the BBC in the UK and the largest in Asia with many award-winning science and technology programs. Japanese TV is producing a documentary about IoT and Smart technology and will be covering @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley. The program, to be aired during the peak viewership season of the year, will have a major impac...
SYS-CON Events announced today that ProfitBricks, the provider of painless cloud infrastructure, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. ProfitBricks is the IaaS provider that offers a painless cloud experience for all IT users, with no learning curve. ProfitBricks boasts flexible cloud servers and networking, an integrated Data Center Designer tool for visual control over the cloud and the best price/performance value available. ProfitBricks was named one of the coolest Clo...
Organizations already struggle with the simple collection of data resulting from the proliferation of IoT, lacking the right infrastructure to manage it. They can't only rely on the cloud to collect and utilize this data because many applications still require dedicated infrastructure for security, redundancy, performance, etc. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Emil Sayegh, CEO of Codero Hosting, will discuss how in order to resolve the inherent issues, companies need to combine dedicated and cloud solutions through hybrid hosting – a sustainable solution for the data required to manage I...
Apps and devices shouldn't stop working when there's limited or no network connectivity. Learn how to bring data stored in a cloud database to the edge of the network (and back again) whenever an Internet connection is available. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Bradley Holt, Developer Advocate at IBM Cloud Data Services, will demonstrate techniques for replicating cloud databases with devices in order to build offline-first mobile or Internet of Things (IoT) apps that can provide a better, faster user experience, both offline and online. The focus of this talk will be on IBM Cloudant, Apa...
WebRTC is about the data channel as much as about video and audio conferencing. However, basically all commercial WebRTC applications have been built with a focus on audio and video. The handling of “data” has been limited to text chat and file download – all other data sharing seems to end with screensharing. What is holding back a more intensive use of peer-to-peer data? In her session at @ThingsExpo, Dr Silvia Pfeiffer, WebRTC Applications Team Lead at National ICT Australia, will look at different existing uses of peer-to-peer data sharing and how it can become useful in a live session to...
As a company adopts a DevOps approach to software development, what are key things that both the Dev and Ops side of the business must keep in mind to ensure effective continuous delivery? In his session at DevOps Summit, Mark Hydar, Head of DevOps, Ericsson TV Platforms, will share best practices and provide helpful tips for Ops teams to adopt an open line of communication with the development side of the house to ensure success between the two sides.
SYS-CON Events announced today that IBM Cloud Data Services has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 17th Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. IBM Cloud Data Services offers a portfolio of integrated, best-of-breed cloud data services for developers focused on mobile computing and analytics use cases.
"Matrix is an ambitious open standard and implementation that's set up to break down the fragmentation problems that exist in IP messaging and VoIP communication," explained John Woolf, Technical Evangelist at Matrix, in this interview at @ThingsExpo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
WebRTC has had a real tough three or four years, and so have those working with it. Only a few short years ago, the development world were excited about WebRTC and proclaiming how awesome it was. You might have played with the technology a couple of years ago, only to find the extra infrastructure requirements were painful to implement and poorly documented. This probably left a bitter taste in your mouth, especially when things went wrong.
Nowadays, a large number of sensors and devices are connected to the network. Leading-edge IoT technologies integrate various types of sensor data to create a new value for several business decision scenarios. The transparent cloud is a model of a new IoT emergence service platform. Many service providers store and access various types of sensor data in order to create and find out new business values by integrating such data.