Sri Lanka Mobitel mulls acquisitions

COLOMBO (EconomyNext) – Mobitel (Private) Limited, a fully-owned unit of Sri Lanka Telecom, is still on the lookout for acquisitions in the local mobile phone sector where intense competition has prompted calls for consolidation.

"In addition to investing in organic growth, the company will take advantage of opportunities presented in the form of acquisitions," the parent firm, SLT has told shareholders in its annual report.

Both Mobitel, which accounted for 47 percent of SLT group revenue in 2014, and Dialog Axiata, had been in talks to acquire Hutchison Telecommunications Lanka, a smaller player, last year.

Mobitel’s net profit in 2014 rose 15 percent to 2.8 billion rupees from the year before, with revenue up 11 percent to 30.60 billion rupees.

The SLT annual report said Sri Lanka’s telecom industry was maturing and preparing for consolidation, a trend also noted by rating agencies.

Fitch Ratings said last year that Sri Lanka continues to be the most crowded market with five operators serving a population of 21 million.

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