Minister kept in the dark about sale negotiations
The Minister of Communications and Information Technology (M.C.I.T), Afamasaga Rico Tupa’i, was not informed by Bluesky about its parent company, Amper SA’s plan to sell its South Pacific business to a Fijian company.
Contacted for a comment yesterday, Afamasaga told the Samoa Observer the sale was news to him. “I’m not aware of it,” he said. “I’ll find out and will speak to you about it after.”
Amper SA owns 75 per cent of Bluesky Samoa while the other 25 per cent is owned by the government through the Unit Trust of Samoa (U.T.O.S). Last week, U.T.O.S. Chief Executive Officer, Sau Justina Sau, told the Samoa Observer they were only told through Google Alert.
“At this time, we cannot provide any comments on this matter,” said Sau. “Except to say that we’re only made aware when the Bluesky Pacific C.E.O emailed us the Google Alert yesterday (Thursday).” On Sunday, Bluesky Samoa confirmed the plan by Amper to sell its business to Amalgamated Telecom Holdings (A.T.H.).
In a statement issued by the Bluesky Samoa’s Chief Commercial Officer, Sanjeewa Perera, it confirmed that Amper and A.T.H have started the negotiations.
“Bluesky’s parent company Amper SA released a statement on Wednesday 29th June, 2016 announcing it has signed a non-binding letter of intent to divest its South Pacific holdings to Fijian group, Amalgamated Telecom Holdings (A.T.H),” the statement said.
“The strong performance of Bluesky Pacific Group operations in American Samoa, Samoa, New Zealand and Cook Islands has attracted the attention of key telecom operators in the region such as A.T.H.”
According to Bluesky Samoa, the intention of both parties is to engage in dialogue regarding a potential acquisition. “These discussions have now commenced. A potential acquisition is subject to agreement by the parties on price, terms of acquisition and regulatory approvals.
“Bluesky fully supports its parent company’s decision to explore this opportunity and is involved in the discussions to ensure the best commercial decision is made not only for Amper SA and Bluesky Pacific Group operations, but also for its existing local investors, customers and community.”
Bluesky Samoa is part of the Bluesky Pacific Group, which is regional telecommunications group, with its companies providing Fixed Line, Mobile, Broadband and I.P.T.V services to consumers in American Samoa, Samoa, New Zealand and Cook Islands.