Telecom Egypt, the largely state-owned fixed company, wants to hire financial advisers to assist in offloading its 45 per cent stake in Vodafone’s local unit, valued at around £1 billion last year, according to Bloomberg.
It has asked local and international banks to send in proposals if they want to be involved, said a source at the company.
The government announced in September that it wants to see the Vodafone stake sold by the end of next year.
Earlier this year the government backed plans to issue a mobile licence to Telecom Egypt.
The licence allows Telecom Egypt to enter the mobile market, in return for a fee of $358 million, while allowing existing operators Vodafone, Orange and Etisalat to make use of Telecom Egypt’s fixed network.
Telecom Egypt is the country’s fixed-line monopoly.
In April it was reported that Vodafone has first refusal on the 45 per cent stake. If Vodafone passes on buying the stake then Telecom Egypt could sell to another local partner or float shares on the local stock exchange.
According to GSMA Intelligence, Vodafone is the mobile market leader in Egypt with over 42 million connections (end-Q3 2014 figures).