Telkom on Friday finally issued a statement to investors via the JSE’s stock exchange news service after Rain on Thursday said it planned to approach the telecommunications operator’s board about a possible merger.
All it said, however, was that it had not received an offer or proposal from Rain, and that it remains in talks with rival MTN Group about a possible transaction.
MTN and Telkom had said last month that they were in early-stage discussions about a possible deal.
“Telkom can confirm that no offer or proposal has been received from Rain. If an offer or formal proposal is received from Rain, the board of Telkom will consider it in accordance with its legal obligations,” it said.
“Shareholders are further referred to the cautionary announcement issued by Telkom on 15 July 2022 in relation to discussions between Telkom and MTN Group regarding MTN acquiring the entire issued share capital of Telkom in return for shares or a combination of cash and shares in MTN. Those discussions are continuing and, accordingly, shareholders are advised to continue to exercise caution when dealing in Telkom securities.”
In Thursday’s media statement, which drew the ire of the Takeover Regulation Panel, Rain said there was a strong case to be made for a Telkom/Rain combination as it would create a “5G powerhouse” in South Africa. It said the terms of transaction, including valuation and structure, would “still need to be agreed”. However, Rain said there was a “compelling business case in combining the businesses”.