Saturday, December 23, 2006

Hutchison Telecom... When are we going to know the Price?

Hutchison Telecom International (HTIL) posted this notice on their website. Finally acknowledging what I have been writing in my column ad nauseum for the past week.

But Dammit...

Still waiting for the PRICE of the bid to be announced. Do wonder if it will be for HTIL's 67% stake or for the whole company...

If for the whole company...

US$13.5b? No way. Malaysia's Maxis tried (I heard)
US$15b? Probably will have at least one bid at these levels, as thats the amount Ambani's Reliance is trying to raise (I heard)
More? Later rounds for sure.

6.5 mil new subscribers every single month (China had a month 2 years ago signing up 8 mil users but that has now fallen to 6.4mil a month). At HK$80 ARPU (Average revenue per user) thats a market growing by US$800mil a year... hold on... its actually not that much hehehehe

Ah well.

The question is... Can anyone afford to look back and say that they gave up the chance to own "the next" China Mobile? Would you have bought at HK$30? 40? 50?

FYI... China Mobile's
Market Cap - US$161b
Number of users - 296m (End of Nov 2006)
New users growth per month (2006) - 4.5m+

Hutchison Essar
Market Cap - ?
Number of users - 20m subscribers (End of Sept 2006)
New users growth per month (Q3 2006) - 0.9m+

Yeah... I am sure you kids will say "But Hutchison Essar doesn't have a monopoly like China Mobile!"

Sure... but if I was a sales pitching this deal, I will stick with the "You HAVE to own the NEXT China Mobile!... Market cap US$161b!... Hutchison Essar's growth rate will catch up... Like India's subscriber growth rate has caught up with China's!..."

Anyhow... let's see when official news of the price of any real bids crosses the wire or is released by the company.

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