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Greece fails to get any bids for minority stake in OTE Telecom

Athens

GREECE did not receive any bids for the sale of a minority stake in its biggest telecoms operator OTE and has invited Deutsche Telekom to exercise its right of first refusal to buy the shares, the Greek privatisations agency said on Friday.

OTE, the former national monopoly, is 40 per cent owned and managed by Germany's Deutsche Telekom.

Greece launched a tender to sell a 5 per cent stake in OTE last month as part of its international bailout, and has earmarked 250 million euros (S$405 million) from the sale in this year's budget plan. The deadline for investors to submit offers for 24.5 million shares was March 15.

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Under a shareholders' agreement, Deutsche Telekom has 30 business days to decide if it will buy the stake at a price equal to the average share price of the last 20 trading sessions. Shares in OTE closed at 11.22 euros on Friday.

The Greek state holds a 10 per cent stake in OTE, which has a market value of 5.6 billion euros and is the country's second-biggest listed company by market value. REUTERS

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