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Fri, Jan. 29, 10:24 AM
- Economic problems in Eurasia are complicating a plan for TeliaSonera (OTCPK:TLSNY +1.6%) to sell out of networks there, chief Johan Dennelind says.
- "Macro is troublesome in many markets and you could argue the timing is wrong," Dennelind says. "But focusing efforts into the Nordic and Baltic markets is more important. We have to make sure we exit responsibly -- we are not running away and leave the keys on the table."
- The Swedish operator expressed an interest in selling out of the region -- and its Fintur co-owner Turkcell (TKC +2.9%) showed a strong interest in buying -- but the company says closing a sale may be tough.
- Other parties than Turkcell are interested in Fintur, though, which owns four operators in Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan and Moldova.
- TeliaSonera already treats the Eurasian operations as "discontinued" in reports.
- Previously: Turkcell on the hunt for control of Eurasian operators (Sep. 18 2015)
Mon, Jan. 4, 6:34 PM
- In its look at telecoms in emerging markets, Renaissance Capital says video could bring new growth -- and the sector may be a place to target dividends.
- "Telcos are jumping too late on the fast moving Internet train," the analysts write. "Video could be the ‘next big thing’ for mobile telcos and the step-up jump in usage (rather than a gradual shift) creates the possibility that this will translate into revenues."
- That growth, though, is likely going to fall victim to competition in no more than 12 months, they say.
- RenCap thinks the growth outlook is best in Turkey, as Russia and MENA face macro headwinds. In Turkey, the firm prefers Turk Telekom (OTC:TRKNY) to Turkcell (TKC -2.1%): “Ultimately a telecom (as with any other sector) is as good as its dividend stream is. On this metric we estimate [Turk Telekom] could be worth TRL5.8/share if all allowable earnings adjusted for availability of cash are paid out as dividends, and assuming the market would be happy with an 11.5% yield – 10.5% versus Turkish local bonds."
- Meanwhile, in Russia the firm likes Mobile TeleSytems (MBT -2.8%) and Sistema over VimpelCom (NASDAQ:VIP), and it highlights MTN Group (OTCPK:MTNOY -1.4%) in South Africa, though noting that firm's huge Nigerian fine shows that developing countries present regulatory risk and "become inventive when it comes to enhancing state coffers.”
Dec. 18, 2015, 11:16 AM
- Turkcell (TKC -2.8%) has brought its expanded messaging app BiP, with expanded voice and video features, to the Ukraine.
- The company offers service in Ukraine under its brand "Life:)" and is launching the IP-based application there after rolling it out in other countries.
- The app -- which also features disappearing messages a la Snapchat -- now supports voice over IP and video over IP. Previously available in Turkish and English, it now supports Ukrainian, Belarussian and Russian as well.
- BiP has been downloaded 4.2M times prior to the Ukraine launch; Turkcell serves 13.8M customers in Ukraine.
- Previously: Turkcell adds voice, video to popular messaging app (Nov. 27 2015)
Nov. 27, 2015, 12:58 PM
- Turkcell (TKC -2.7%) says it has launched voice and video calls on BiP, its IP-based messaging app.
- BiP has been downloaded for free more than 3.3M times (by Turkcell subscribers and otherwise) in more than 166 countries. The app also features disappearing messages a la Snapchat.
- The voice and video addition is coming along with 1 GB of free data for Turkcell's subscribers, though. The company plans to launch it in Ukraine and Belarus, in local languages with local content.
Nov. 2, 2015, 3:11 PM
- Turkcell (NYSE:TKC) is up 4.7%, having a banner day along with other Turkish issues after Turkey's ruling party surprised some observers by regaining a majority government.
- IShares' Turkey ETF (NYSEARCA:TUR) is up 9.2% today, while the Turkish Investment Fund (NYSE:TKF) is up 8.2%.
- Bank of America analyst Turker Hamzaoglu says the election had an unexpected result but it suggests that political risks in the country may have peaked and despite some significant remaining challenges, the investment case has been "resolved in what we believe is a market friendly way."
- He's upgraded his rating on Turkish external debt to Market Weight from Underweight.
Oct. 27, 2015, 1:24 PM
- In Q3 results, Turkcell (TKC -1.5%) posted all-time high quarterly sales and EBITDA.
- Group revenues were up 6.4% to TRY 3.36B, chiefly driven by Turkey. Group EBITDA was up 10.5% to TRY 1.16B. Revenues for Turkcell Turkey (91% of total) rose 9.9% to TRY 3.07B.
- Total customers have exceeded 34M; postpaid customers were up 278K to exceed 16M. Blended mobile ARPU was up 9.7% Y/Y to TRY 26.1.
- Turkcell restructured debt at its Astelit and BeST units to eliminate forex risk.
- The company has updated guidance for full-year EBITDA margin to 32%-32.5% from the previous 31%-32%, and for revenue growth of 10% (for Turkcell Turkey) and 6% (for the wider Turkcell Group).
Sep. 18, 2015, 8:08 PM
- Turkcell (TKC -1%) is in the market to buy out the rest of some Eurasian assets from Sweden's TeliaSonera (OTCPK:TLSNY -2.2%), which is refocusing on Europe.
- The Turkish carrier says it's working to take control of Fintur, which owns four mobile operators in Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan and Moldova. Turkcell has a 41.45% interest in Fintur, and TeliaSonera the other 58.55%.
- Correspondingly, the four operators operate as units of TeliaSonera with its branding style.
- Turkcell has pointed to its Ukrainian spread -- it bought out its partner in Ukraine's Astelit in June -- as a model for more regional cross-border expansion.
- Previously: Turkcell up as JPMorgan get bullish on Turkish telecom (Sep. 17 2015)
- Previously: Turkcell names CEO for Ukraine unit (Sep. 16 2015)
Aug. 26, 2015, 3:36 PM
- Turkey's once-postponed auction of 4G airwaves did better than expected, drawing €3.96B (about $4.5B) in bids from Turkey's three operators: Vodafone (VOD +2.5%), Turkcell (TKC +4.6%) and Avea (OTC:TRKNY).
- The original tender had been postponed in May as president Recep Tayyip Erdogan pressed for a cancellation, and for the country to skip a generation and try to upgrade infrastructure to 5G. But that technology isn't fully defined yet, and any commercial rollouts aren't likely before 2020.
- The auction performed well in a market that features a young, data-hungry population, says analyst Jonathan Friedman: "Beyond recent political instability, Turkey is a large market with nearly 80 million consumers, and investors want to be a part of that."
- The bids received today are subject to a final approval process before frequencies are allocated.
Aug. 21, 2015, 12:54 PM
- Vodafone (VOD -2.8%) has pulled out of a six-company competition to take over Lebanon's two mobile operators.
- The government's two mobile firms, Touch and Alfa, were being run by Zain and Orascom Telecom Media and Technology, though the two companies' management contracts expired two years ago.
- Vodafone's pulling out leaves five others competing: Zain, Orange (ORAN -0.2%), Maxis, Turkcell (TKC -1.9%) and a unit of Deutsche Telekom (OTCQX:DTEGY), as OTMT didn't submit a bid application on time.
Jun. 29, 2015, 12:02 PM
- Turkcell (TKC -2.7%) has wrapped a buyout of the rest of its Ukrainian unit, Astelit.
- The company's paid $100M to buy out partner System Capital Management, who held 45% of Astelit through its Netherlands venture partner Euroasia Telecommunications Holding. Astelit operates in Ukraine under the brand "Life:)."
- Turkcell is also settling Astelit's debts with SCM and guaranteeing up to $66M in credit.
- It marks Turkcell's first major move across borders, and the company says it will use Ukraine as a pilot for further regional expansion.
- Previously: Turkcell in talks to buy out Ukrainian partners (Jun. 19 2015)
- Previously: Turkcell down 5.3%; launches Ukraine 3G (Jun. 08 2015)
Jun. 8, 2015, 10:47 AM
- Along with Turkey's stock market tumble today following election upheaval, Turkcell (NYSE:TKC) is off 5.3% in early NYSE trading.
- The company today is announcing its Astelit unit became the first GSM operator to successfully launch 3G service in the Ukraine.
- It's a quick move after Turkcell won a 3G license in February's tender -- it had planned to launch six months after acquiring the rights -- and should pay benefits as Astelit is the country's leader in smartphone penetration, with 36% of users on smartphones.
- Meanwhile, new CEO Kaan Terzioglu has been pushing Turkey's government to upgrade infrastructure to pave the way for a successful 4G rollout later this year. A 4G auction is set for Aug. 26, though president Erdogan had been urging the country to skip 4G (and cancel that auction) and head straight to 5G.
Mar. 17, 2015, 9:48 AM
- Turkcell Iletisim Hizmetleri (NYSE:TKC) is up 2.3% as Russian conglomerate Alfa Group has launched a dramatic $2.8B offer to effectively take control of Turkey's top telecom -- though success is far from likely.
- Alfa has offered $54.9M/share for the 13.8% owned by Cukurova Holding -- along with Alfa and TeliaSonera, one of the three key shareholders of Turkcell. Alfa owned that same stake just last year.
- But Cukurova would have to accept the bid, and a Turkish government reluctant over Russian takeovers in Turkey would have to approve.
- Turkcell is set to hold its first shareholder meeting since 2011; if the meeting doesn't come off, Turkey's capital markets watchdog can seize control of the executive committee.
Mar. 4, 2015, 3:01 PM
- A record low for Turkey's lira against the dollar is driving the country's market lower -- and the currency's performance tends to hit wireless provider Turkcell (TKC -2.4%).
- The Turkish lira would be the world's worst performer in emerging markets, except for the Brazilian real.
- Conflict continues between the country's central bank and the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who's accused the bank of treason for resisting rate cuts.
- Meanwhile, with the announcement of 4G tender specifications by the government, Turkcell says it's ready to launch 4G service in country "at the earliest possible time." The tender is expected by the end of May; "Had the government held the tender tomorrow, we would have been ready for it," says acting CEO Ilker Kuruoz.
- Related stocks: (OTCPK:OGZPY -2.3%), (OTCQX:TKGBY -4.3%), (OTCPK:TAVHY -1.9%). ETF: (TUR -4.1%)
- Previously: Turkcell follows Turkish trades lower (Feb. 27 2015)
- Previously: Turkey tumbles as government takes over Bank Asya (Feb. 04 2015)
Feb. 27, 2015, 2:03 PM
- Turkish mobile leader Turkcell (TKC -2.1%) is lower today, along with other Turkish trades, as Société Générale bails out of the country: "We just closed all our bullish trades on Turkey."
- The firm expects the Turkish lira to sell off in the aftermath of the central bank's rate cut -- and its dispute with Turkey's leadership over monetary policy.
- SocGen has taken out a long position in dollar/lira volatility that it says is already paying off.
- The Turkish lira has slipped 3% against the dollar over the past week.
- Related stocks: (OTCQX:TKGBY -3.4%), (OTCPK:TAVHY -2.3%)
- ETFs: TUR -2%.
- Previously: Turkey tumbles as government takes over Bank Asya (Feb. 04 2015)
Feb. 24, 2015, 10:50 AM
- Units that are part of Russian mobile firms VimpelCom (NASDAQ:VIP) and Mobile TeleSystems (NYSE:MBT) have joined Turkcell (NYSE:TKC) in winning 3G licenses in Ukraine.
- The Russian firms protected some market position despite a signal from Ukraine that it would favor non-Russian firms in an effort to break up their dominance. VimpelCom's Kyivstar is the biggest carrier in the country, with 42% share.
- The companies praised the transparency of the auction process.
- In current trading: MBT +3.5%; VIP -1%; TKC -0.4%.
- Previously: Turkcell unit wins 3G spectrum in Ukraine (Feb. 23 2015)
Feb. 17, 2015, 6:49 PM
- Goldman Sachs upgraded Turkish telecom Turkcell Iletisim Hizmetleri (NYSE:TKC) to Buy, from its previous rating of Neutral.
- Its move (along with Citi's price target hike) is a rare bit of analyst sunshine after shares faced downgrades the past few months.
- The stock continues to be responsive to ruble moves; today shares were down 1.7% despite Goldman's upgrade, as today the ruble slipped to 63.41/dollar.
- The company cited currency losses from its operations in Ukraine and Belarus in explaining net income that dropped by half.
- Other ruble-related telecoms: (VIP -2.6%), (MBT -2.7%)
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