Kazakh mobile firm looks at dual listing

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Kcell, Kazakhstan’s biggest mobile operator, plans to list in Kazakhstan and London by the end of the year and has appointed banks to run the process, sources close to the deal said.

Nordic telecoms group TeliaSonera agreed last year to buy a 49 per cent stake in Kcell for £951m and said it planned to float a quarter of the company’s shares.

Kcell could begin marketing the initial public offering (IPO) next week, one of the sources said, while another said it was aiming for a market debut in December.

The offering could compete for investor attention with Russia’s second biggest mobile operator MegaFon, which has delayed a planned London listing until after its third-quarter financial results, due in early November.

It is possible MegaFon’s sale could still be held back until January however.

Credit Suiss and UBS are advising on Kcell’s planned offering.

Kazakh investment bank Visor Capital is also working on the listing, the Kazakhstan Stock Exchange said in a statement, confirming that Kcell had made an application to list its shares on the local stock market.

Visor Capital and Kcell both declined to comment. The sources did not say how much the company hoped to raise from the sale, but the Financial Times reported it was seeking as much as £500m.

This would be around the level the company was valued at when TeliaSonera, which also owns a minority stake in MegaFon, bought its 49 per cent stake.

Kcell is the leading mobile operator in Kazakhstan by market share in terms of revenue and subscribers.