TOT plans to list subsidiaries next year

TOT plans to list subsidiaries next year

TOT Plc feels it must accelerate listing its three subsidiaries in the stock exchange as soon as possible in order to raise money to ease its heavy financial burden.

The state telecom enterprise plans to list its three units _ Telecom Tower Sharing, Optical-fibre Sharing and Application Co _ on the SET in 2013.

The first two companies will rent telecom network equipment for its existing second-generation (2G) infrastructure and its new 3G network to all operators. The application firm is designed to serve the arrival of full 3G commercial data service.

Panthep Chamrasromran, the former TOT board chairman who recently stepped down, warned that TOT needs a low-cost source of funding to serve its second-phase 3G network expansion and reduce its excessive financial costs.

Mr Panthep and seven other board members tendered their resignations last week.

TOT plans to spend 30 billion baht to build an additional 12,000 3G base stations nationwide under its second phase 3G network expansion.

The state enterprise's major concessionaire, Advanced Info Service, is due to expire in 2015. The concessions of True Corp and TT&T Plc are also due to expire in the near future.

After serving as the head of TOT for 10 months, Mr Panthep said it is in a "precarious situation" regarding its financial status.

He pointed to two factors impeding TOT's business development: a hefty 18,000 employees and bureaucratic red tape for operations and procurement.

Mr Panthep suggested the new head of TOT focus on 3G wireless broadband services and telecom network rental services for new lucrative revenue streams.

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