Mergers & Acquisitions

Mergers & Acquisitions

July 19, 2011

ALFA Completes Acquisition of AT&T's 49 Percent Stake in Alestra

The world's leading manufacturer of high-tech aluminium engine heads and blocks, ALFA, and AT&T (News - Alert), a leading provider of wireless, Wi-Fi, high speed Internet, voice and cloud-based services, announced that ALFA has finalized its purchase of AT&T's 49 percent stake in Alestra (News - Alert), S. de R.L. de C.V. (Alestra), the Mexican telecom company. Presently ALFA is the sole shareholder of Alestra.

This transaction took place and was approved by regulatory authorities in Mexico. The total amount of the transaction was not disclosed. The AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc.

ALFA was recently in news when its chairman and CEO Marwan Hayek confirmed that the Lebanese government is seriously planning to cut the prices of postpaid services provided by ALFA during the second half of 2011.

ALFA is the brand name of the first Lebanese mobile network managed by Cairo-based Orascom Telecom (News - Alert) Holding since February 2009. It is a state-owned mobile firm, and any decisions on cutting prices of its services must be approved by the government. In line with Former Telecoms Minister Charbel Nahas' plan to revamp the sector, Alfa has recently provided its clients with a new "Wafer" prepaid plan that offers discounted rates on voice calls, SMS, and prepaid services allowing users to buy recharge cards at: $9.09 or $15.15 or $27.27 for a 30-day period.

For many years, cellular rates in Lebanon have ranked among the highest in the region as well inferior services compared to those offered by mobile operators in neighboring countries. Hayek believes that the privatization of the two mobile operators owned by the government and creating a new one to put pressure on the existing ones is the best way of moving the sector to the next level in terms of performance, efficiency and services to the end users.

Sujata Garud is a TMCnet freelancer with three years of writing/editing experience and two years of market research experience. As an editor she has covered the IT, electronics, banking, pharma, construction, mining and healthcare industries. To see more of her articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Rich Steeves


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