Digital Nasional Berhad (DNB), the company managing Malaysia’s controversial single 5G wholesale network, confirmed two mobile players pulled out of a deal to take stakes in the state-owned entity, requiring the shareholding arrangement with the other four operators to be renegotiated.

In s statement, DNB explained despite share agreements being confirmed and ready to be executed by six MNOs by the 30 August deadline, two companies made last-minute decisions not to participate.

DNB said transaction documents need to be updated to account for equity subscriptions reduced to four operators, which will require additional internal approvals.

It noted discussions with all six operators on the terms for access to the 5G network are progressing under a separate and independent track.

Earlier in the week, Reuters reporting Maxis and U-Mobile turned down an offer to be minority shareholders.

Telekom Malaysia YTL Communications, the two smallest mobile players in the country, were the first to agree to take stakes, and were followed by Celcom Axiata and Digi, which are in the process of merging.

DNB said 5G coverage reached about 30 per cent of populated areas and is on track to hit the target of 80 per cent coverage of populated areas by 2024.