Fixed Access

Apr 20, 2011 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s Dialog Axiata a unit of Malaysia’s Axiata played down mounting speculation that it is about to buy Suntel, a wireless fixed access provider owned by Sweden’s Telia. “There is nothing happening regarding Suntel at the moment,” Dharshana Abeysinghe, a spokesman for Dialog Axiata, said.

There is intense industry speculation that Axiata had conducted preliminary due diligence on Suntel and a deal may be reached soon following a visit by a Malaysian team.

Suntel had been in the market for some time, with an Indian telecom eyeing it at one time. But the deal fell through.

Another fixed access firm, Lanka Bell, owned by listed Distilleries group is also in the market. Dialog Axiata is Sri Lanka’s largest mobile operator, but it also has a fixed access division using code-division-multiple access technology. Suntel also uses the same technological platform.