KUALA LUMPUR: Axiata Group Bhd
’s subsidiary Dialog Axiata PLC is set to launch a mandatory takeover offer (MTO) for Sri Lanka-listed finance firm Colombo Trust Finance PLC (CTF).
This follows its purchase of 80.34% of the voting rights in CTF from Cargills Bank Ltd on Tuesday for 1.072 billion Sri Lankan rupees (RM29.53mil).
Axiata, which owns an 83.32% stake in Dialog Axiata, told Bursa Malaysia that the Sri Lankan mobile and fixed line player made the move in a bid to expand into mainstream digital financial services.
CTF, which is listed on the Colombo Stock Exchange like Dialog Axiata, offers finance products and services covering fixed deposits, lease and hire purchase facilities, margin trading, mortgage loans, demand loans, revolving loans, cheque discounting, factoring, and other credit facilities.
To comply with Sri Lanka’s Company Take-Overs and Mergers Code 1995, Dialog Axiata would make an MTO for the remaining shares at 28.70 rupees (79 sen). The purchase of all the remaining shares will cost it RM7.22mil.
Axiata said the acquisition of CTF would facilitate the expansion of the Dialog group’s scope of operations into the sphere of mainstream digital financial services.
Dialog Axiata, which entered the financial services sphere in 2012 when the Central Bank of Sri Lanka licenced it to operate the country’s first mobile payment service eZ Cash, aims to deliver a revolutionary suite of products and services by combining advanced digital connectivity and cutting edge financial technology (FinTech).
eZ Cash, now in its fifth year of operation, has over the years secured over 2.8 million mobile payment subscribers from across Etisalat Hutch and Dialog Mobile Networks.
Axiata noted that in 2015, eZ Cash won the GSM World Award for the best Mobile Payment Network Globally in recognition of being the world’s first end-to-end inter-operable mobile payment network.
According to Axiata, Dialog is Sri Lanka’s largest foreign direct investor with investments totalling over US$2.1bil (RM8.8bil).