Etisalat abandons Zain bid

UAE telco gives up on attempt to buy controlling stake in Kuwait's Zain
Etisalat said that following due diligence and upheaval in the region, it was no longer looking to buy a stake in Zain
Etisalat said that following due diligence and upheaval in the region, it was no longer looking to buy a stake in Zain

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Etisalat has announced that it has abandoned attempts to gain a controlling stake in Kuwaiti rival Zain.

In a statement released today, Etisalat said "Due to the results of due diligence done by Etisalat's financial advisers and legal experts, the political turmoil in the region, the absence of a consensus between Zain's shareholders, and the effect of the law binding offers that is due to be issued in Kuwait...Etisalat conditions that were announced on Nov.3 are no longer applicable."

Etisalat had been in negotiations to buy a 46% stake in Zain, valued at just under $12 billion, from a consortium of shareholders led by the Kharafi Group. Talks had been underway since September 2010, but the move was opposed by Zain's board, and there were numerous delays in the process.

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