Allen & Overy has advised on the amalgamation of dtac and True in Thailand
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Publications: 06 September 2023
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Allen & Overy has advised Telenor Asia, part of the Norwegian majority state-owned multinational telecommunications company Telenor Group (Telenor), together with Total Access Communication Public Company Limited (dtac), on the amalgamation of the telecoms operations of dtac and True Corporation Public Company Limited (True) in Thailand.
The transaction is the largest telecommunications merger in Southeast Asia to-date, with the new company having a combined enterprise value of USD20.7 billion, and serving an estimated 55 million mobile customers, 5 million broadband connections, as well as 3.2 million pay-TV subscribers.
Telenor and Charoen Pokphand Group will be equal partners with a 30.3 per cent ownership stake each in the new company, which is well placed to serve Thailand’s increasing demand for high-speed data and to capture growth opportunities in a fast-changing digital region.
Our team’s work on this mandate in Thailand follows our earlier work advising Telenor on the successful merger in Malaysia of the telecoms operations of Celcom Axiata Berhad and Digi.Com Berhad to form Celcom Digi Berhad. This prior transaction, which completed in November 2022, resulted in the formation of a world-class Malaysian digital telecoms company serving an estimated 20 million customers in that market.
Suparerk Auychai, managing partner of our Bangkok office and head of the office’s corporate practice, commented: "The completion of this significant transaction represents a milestone in Thailand’s digital ecosystem, where the use and adoption of digital technologies often ranks amongst the highest in the region." Suparerk added: "A&O’s in depth local market expertise and our understanding of Telenor’s business was effectively applied throughout this transaction".
James Mythen, partner, commented: "We are very proud to have advised long-standing client Telenor on this landmark deal in Thailand, as well as on the earlier merger in Malaysia. Both amalgamations are aligned with the trend of consolidation among telecoms operators across Southeast Asia. We are delighted to have served Telenor on both mandates with a multidisciplinary team with deep expertise on these types of transactions".
The A&O team that advised on the amalgamation of dtac and True in Thailand was led by managing partner Suparerk Auychai and partner James Mythen, with substantial support from counsel Arthit Hemara, senior associate Christine Fong, and associates Chakrit Chomketkaew and Zann Tay.