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Beeline’s future in Cambodia unknown

Beeline’s future in Cambodia unknown

Officials at Beeline Cambodia parent Vimpelcom would not speculate yesterday on whether the company’s divestiture of its Vietnamese assets meant operations in the Kingdom would soon cease.

On Monday, Amsterdam-based Vimpelcom sold its 49 per cent stake in Vietnam’s GTEL Mobile Joint Stock Co for US$45 million to GTEL Transmit and Infrastructure Service One Member Co Ltd, a “related party” of its local partner Global Telecommunications Corporation.

The Beeline trademark was expected to be phased out in Vietnam after a six-month transition period, a Vimpelcom statement said.

The move comes after Vimpelcom in March booked a $527 million impairment charge on its operations in Cambodia and Vietnam as a result of the company’s overvaluation of those markets.

But company officials yesterday would not offer definitive answers on the fate of Beeline Cambodia.

Vimpelcom group director of communications Bobby Leach reiterated comments by CEO Jo Lunder that the Vietnam sale was a part of a general review of the company’s operations.

“We have an ongoing process of looking at each of our assets to evaluate their future value to the group . . .  and the sale of Vietnam was a result of that process,” Leach said.

“What that means for all our other operations, it’s too early to tell.”

Beeline general manager Gael Campan did not respond to requests for comment.

To contact the reporter on this story: Tom Brennan at [email protected]

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