Team seeking to acquire Veon Armenia after Ucom talks fail

Team seeking to acquire Veon Armenia after Ucom talks fail

Former Ucom executives the Yesayan brothers have confirmed their intention to acquire Armenia’s market leading operator, Veon Armenia (Beeline).

The acquisition will be made via Hayk and Aleksandr Yesayan’s new venture, Team LLC. Originally known as AllNet, the brothers founded the unit in April this year after divesting their shares in Ucom due to disagreements over the operator’s future.

The Yesayans have described Team LLC as an attempt to “create a better operator than the one we founded twelve years ago.” The brothers were part of the small team that founded Ucom in 2009, and are considered to have been instrumental in making the alternative operator one of Armenia’s most successful companies.

Veon Armenia has sought permission from the SCPEC (State Commission for Protection of Economic Competition) and PSRC (Public Services Regulatory Committee) to sell 100% of its shares to Team LLC, and the new venture has now filed for a permit to acquire them. If permission is granted, Team LLC will offer services as Team Telecom Armenia.

Local media outlets have quoted Team CEO Hayk Yesayan as saying: “Team is paving a new way in Armenia’s telecom and digital services market and this purchase will help us further enhance our professional team and develop the infrastructure.”

He noted that “Team.Telecom Armenia has already begun designing and building a next generation network” and that acquiring Veon’s shares would “further accelerate” the company’s efforts.

Veon had previously been in discussions with Ucom over a potential merger between the companies, but these were abandoned in May following the departure in April of the Yesayan brothers, along with several hundred Ucom employees.

The resignations arose from a dispute with senior Ucom staff and shareholders, who argued that if the merger was successful, the resulting entity would be led by Beeline CEO Andrey Pyatakhin. Veon gave no official reason for abandoning the talks with Ucom.

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