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Strategical Partial Disposal of Solomon Telekom Ltd Shares - Letter to Editor Solomon Star

I would like to clarify the recent media coverage on our planned strategic partial sell down of the ex-Cable and Wireless (C&W) 32.58% shares in STCL the SINPF Board bought for $100 million in September 2014.  The Board then was given an 18 months period to dispose the 32.58% shares by the regulator.

The strategy to acquire and to secure the Minister of Finance and the Central Bank of Solomon Islands (CBSI) approval to purchase the shares was simple.  The Board will invoke its first right of refusal, negotiate a price for the shares, acquire them and later sell the shares to a credible and reputable partner that the Board can work with. 

C&W since 2010 has been negotiating with various parties to purchase their shares but were not successful. At the time in 2014 both the ATH and Digicel were negotiating with C&W for their 32.58% shares.

Today this strategy has not changed, both for; 1) very good strategic business reasons and 2) for the de-risking of our concentration risk to unlisted domestic equities and the domestic telecommunications sector.

Once a deal is successfully negotiated and completed the SINPF Board will continue to retain a majority shareholding position at 64.74% in the company.  A position the Board was in before purchasing the C&W shares in September 2014.

ICSI initially expressed to invoke its right of first refusal but did not follow through with an offer, and hence allowing SINPF Board to recommence discussions with the interested party.

Mike Wate
CEO/General Manager


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