Telenor yesterday filed a claim in the Supreme Court of Bermuda, requesting the court to declare Telenor's 15 February purchase of 234,000,000 VimpelCom preferred shares from Weather Investments II S.à.r.l. did not trigger the mandatory tender offer requirements in VimpelCom's bye-laws.
"VimpelCom is a Bermuda company. The issue of whether Telenor and Weather Investments have an obligation under VimpelCom's bye-laws to make a mandatory tender offer is a question of law for determination by a Bermuda court," Telenor spokesman Dag Melgaard said. "We filed this claim to ensure that the court has the opportunity to promptly make such a determination," he added.
Telenor filed its claim following a 1 June letter from Altimo to VimpelCom, in which Altimo alleged that Telenor and Weather Investments violated VimpelCom's bye-laws by forming a group at the time of Telenor's purchase of VimpelCom preferred shares from Weather Investments and then failing to make a tender offer for all of VimpelCom's outstanding shares.
VimpelCom said in a 5 June press statement that its nominating and corporate governance committee would assess Altimo's allegations and make recommendations to the VimpelCom supervisory board as to what action, if any, VimpelCom should take.
VimpelCom Ltd, which is incorporated in Bermuda, is the named respondent in Telenor's claim.
Telenor Group is an international provider of tele, data and media communication services.
Telenor Group has mobile operations in 11 markets in the Nordic region, Central and Eastern Europe and in Asia, as well as a voting stake of 39.5 per cent (economic stake 35.7 per cent) in VimpelCom Ltd., operating in 18 markets.
Telenor is one of the world's major mobile operators with 146 million mobile subscriptions in its consolidated operations per Q1 2012, revenues in 2011 of NOK 99 billion, and a workforce of approximately 30,000.