PT Telekomunikasi Indonesia (Telkom) is planning to buy back the 35 percent stake of its mobile arm, Telkomsel, which is currently owned by Singaporean operator group SingTel. According to Reuters, the move is intended to enable Telkom to boost its profits by increasing its exposure to the mobile business, in the face of tough competition in the country. However, it was suggested that SingTel may not be so keen to sell, stating that it is a “long-term, strategic investor” in the country. The Telkom holding currently contributes around 34.78 million subscribers to SingTel’s 141.37 million proportionate total.
It was also reported that Telkom had ended its talks with Bakrie over the combination of their CDMA businesses, a long-anticipated deal which nevertheless failed to come to fruition. According to Wireless Federation, the companies “just stopped” talking about a merger of the units. It was noted that the alliance had drawn opposition from the country’s labour unions, and was also facing regulatory pressure due to the fact it would create a virtual monopoly on CDMA services in the country – although there is a competitive GSM environment alongside this.