British Telecom Buys Stake in Malaysian Telecom Firm

By Julian Matthews

July 28, 1998 (KUALA LUMPUR) — British Telecommunications Plc. has acquired a one-third stake in Binariang Bhd., a cash-strapped telecom company, for 1.8 billion ringgit (about US$450 million).

The deal is the single largest investment for BT in the Asia Pacific region, and the biggest by a foreign party in a Malaysian telecom company.

The July 24 announcement ended months of speculation in which Binariang had been linked with various foreign telecom firms including Britain’s Cable and Wireless Plc. as well as Singapore Telecommunications Ltd.

Richard Slogrove, BT’s managing director for Asia Pacific, said BT decided to invest in the company because it is confident of Binariang’s long- term prospects.

“Our investment in Binariang represents a total and long-term commitment of a foreign company in the local telecommunications industry as a whole and Binariang specifically,” he said.

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