Bulgaria's BTC may lose licence

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The Bulgarian national telco BTC looks set to lose its local DTT licence for Sofia and environs if it does not launch a service by the end of this month.

Although the licence was awarded for a period of 12 years following a tender in 2001, BTC has since been enmeshed in a controversial privatisation process.

This appeared to have finally been resolved in January, when Vienna-based Viva Ventures, secured a 65 per cent stake in BTC for €230 million.

Under the terms of the agreement, Viva Ventures was also required to raise BTC's capital by €50 million and invest a further €700 million in the telco, of which €400 million would be by 2009.

Viva Ventures secured Bulgaria's third GSM licence as part of the agreement and was required to maintain its investments in the country for at least three years.

Chris Dziadul  |  05.05.2004

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