Singtel studying bid for Australia wireless operator Amaysim: Sources

Singapore Telecommunications Ltd (Singtel), is working with the Bank of America Corp to examine a possible bid for wireless operator Amaysim Australia Ltd.
Singapore Telecommunications Ltd (Singtel), is working with the Bank of America Corp to examine a possible bid for wireless operator Amaysim Australia Ltd. PHOTOS: REUTERS, BLOOMBERG

SINGAPORE (BLOOMBERG) - Singapore Telecommunications Ltd (Singtel), South-east Asia's largest telecom services provider, is moving ahead with examining a possible bid for wireless operator Amaysim Australia Ltd, people with knowledge of the matter said.

The company is working with Bank of America Corp to assess options for investing in Sydney-based Amaysim, the people said, asking not to be identified because the process is private. The appointment was made in the last two weeks, according to one of the people.

A deal for Amaysim, which leases the wireless network owned by the Singapore carrier's local subsidiary, would give Singtel access to the operator's more than 1.1 million mobile subscribers. Shares of Amaysim have slumped about 54 per cent this year, giving the company a market value of A$193 million (S$194.1 million).

Singtel hasn't decided how large a stake it would eventually seek in Amaysim, the people said. Deliberations are at an early stage, and there's no certainty they will result in a bid, they said. Representatives for Singtel and Bank of America declined to comment, while a spokesman for Amaysim said he couldn't immediately comment.

Local subsidiary Singtel Optus Pty reported net income fell 3.5 per cent for the quarter through June to A$154 million. Its wireless revenue rose 7.9 per cent after Optus added customers during the period, though the average revenue per user fell amid competition on data prices.

Amaysim was one of the first Australian operators to offer unlimited national talk and text mobile plans, according to its website. It bought a local Internet provider in 2016 to enter the broadband market and expanded into energy services last year.