Turk Telekom has placed binding bids to acquire Bulgarian operator Cosmo Mobile and electronic appliance retailer Germanos Telecom Bulgaria, both of which are being sold by Greek operator OTE.
A filing with the Istanbul Stock Exchange stated that the move to buy all the shares in both companies is part of Turk Telekom’s regional expansion strategy.
Operating under the Globul brand, Cosmo Mobile is the second largest operator in Bulgaria with close to 4.6 million connections, according to Wireless Intelligence (Q1, 2013 figures). Telekom Austria-owned M-Tel is the market leader with 5.6 million connections while third-placed Vivacom has 2.3 million connections.
OTE announced in June 2012 that it planned to sell its Bulgarian units to help tackle its debt burden.
Bulgarian news agency Novinite reported that Turk Telekom had placed non-binding bids for the two companies in November last year. Turkish market leader Turkcell was also reported to have made a non-binding offer for Globul.
Turk Telekom, operating under the Avea brand, is Turkey’s third largest mobile operator with 13.7 million connections, according to Wireless Intelligence. This compares to Turkcell’s 35.2 million connections and Vodafone with 19.1 million connections.