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Telkom eyes StarOne acquisition

JAKARTA: State-controlled PT Telkom Tbk, is targeting to acquire low cost phone service provider StarOne, owned by rival PT Indosat Tbk.Telkom hopes to hold more intensive talks over the possible acquisition with Indosat as well as Qatar Telecom, which
Yusuf Waluyo Jati
Yusuf Waluyo Jati - Bisnis.com 12 Juli 2011  |  02:54 WIB

JAKARTA: State-controlled PT Telkom Tbk, is targeting to acquire low cost phone service provider StarOne, owned by rival PT Indosat Tbk.Telkom hopes to hold more intensive talks over the possible acquisition with Indosat as well as Qatar Telecom, which controls Indosat. StarOne operates on limited coverage mobile phone service in Indonesia, known as the fixed-wireless access, which is cheaper than the regular mobile phone service.Fixed Wireless Access service still has great prospects, so by acquiring StarOne, we have two fixed wireless phone services, Telkom President Director Rinaldi Firmansyah said yesterday.Telkom will not allocate a special budget for acquiring StarOne until it holds further talks with Indosat. However, the acquisition of StarOne is a second priority following the possible acquisition of Telkomsels 35% shares owned by SingTel.Having StarOne will complement Telkom's existing fixed-wireless access service, called Flexi, Firmansyah said.Nevertheless, Indosat cannot sell StarOne without an approval from the Communications and Information Ministry and Business Competition Supervisory Commission (KPPU).Spin off mechanism on telecommunication sector is different among others considering the limited resources, namely frequency, a member of Indonesian Telecommunication Regulation Board (BRTI) Heru Sutadi told Bisnis.On the other hand, Indosat President Director Harry Sasongko challenges all operators having interest to acquire StarOne.Even though, Indosat will sell the business, Harry knows that the taking over process isnt simple because the process is related to the governments authority controlling the frequency license. Asset sale is still ongoing. Indosat welcomes other operators that want to acquire the business. But, there is no offer so far, Harry has said earlier.PT Telkom Head of Corporate Communication Eddy Kurnia confirmed that Telkom keeps viewing a voice business as an essential business considering its very large contribution to the company currently, even though the business growth is going to be slowed.(t01/msw)


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