Four of five telco investors in Malaysia's DNB have finalized their SSAs

Completion of the SSA is a prerequisite for participating in the Malaysian government's second 5G network.

Gigi Onag, Senior Editor, APAC

June 21, 2024

2 Min Read
Hands holding a phone with Kuala Lumpur
(Source: Davidovich Mikhail/Alamy Stock Photo)

The DNB said Thursday that four of its five telco investors have met all conditions under their respective share subscriptions agreements (SSA), beating the June 21 deadline set three weeks ago.

Completion of the SSA is a prerequisite for participating in the Malaysian government's second 5G network.

The DNB revealed that CelcomDigi, Maxis, YTL and U Mobile have signed off on their SSAs and that the wholesale 5G provider will be able to complete the SSAs of the four telcos by the end of June.

Telekom Malaysia still needs to get shareholder approval to finalize its SSA and the DNB has given the operator until August 21 to complete the process.

The five telco operators entered into SSAs with DNB on December 1, 2023, which collectively give them a 70% equity stake in the company with each holding a 14% share. The Minister of Finance (MOF) owns the remaining 30% stake in DNB, as well as a Special Share for a designated period.

The completion of the SSAs hung in balance for months as the DNB and its five telco investors wrangled over the details of the ''condition precedents," which must be settled before the SSAs can take effect.

Last month, the DNB finally gave the telco operators an ultimatum to finalize their equity stake in the company within 20 days, as the government prepares to launch the country's second 5G network.

Related:Malaysia's DNB gives telcos 20 days to finalize ownership details

Commitment to the dual 5G network policy

Besides setting down details about ownership in the DNB, the completion of SSAs will mark the transition from a single wholesale 5G network model to a dual network model.

In their respective statement saying that they were ready to sign their respective SSA with the DNB, CelcomDigi, Maxis and U Mobile confirmed their interest in the rollout of the second 5G network.

The establishment of a second network is subject to the condition that the DNB has covered 80% of populated areas – which was achieved late last year. As of the end of April, its coverage has reached 81.5% of populated areas.

Early this week, Malaysia's Communications Minister Fahmi Fadzil said the government remains committed to implementing the dual 5G network policy.

Meanwhile, the groundwork for the second 5G network already started with four government ministries holding a comprehensive discussion two weeks ago to develop an action plan to implement the network.

The discussion – involving the Ministry of Communications, the Ministry of Digital, the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry – focused on the functions and roles of the four ministries in ensuring the successful implementation of the dual network model.

Related:Four Malaysian ministries to develop action plan for the second 5G network

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About the Author(s)

Gigi Onag

Senior Editor, APAC, Light Reading

Gigi Onag is Senior Editor, APAC, Light Reading. She has been a technology journalist for more than 15 years, covering various aspects of enterprise IT across Asia-Pacific.

She started with regional IT publications under CMP Asia (now Informa), including Asia Computer Weekly, Intelligent Enterprise Asia and Network Computing Asia and Teledotcom Asia. This was followed by stints with Computerworld Hong Kong and sister publications FutureIoT and FutureCIO. She had contributed articles to South China Morning Post, TechTarget and PC Market among others.

She interspersed her career as a technology editor with a brief sojourn into public relations before returning to journalism, joining the editorial team of Mix Magazine, a MICE publication and its sister publication Business Traveller Asia Pacific.

Gigi is based in Hong Kong and is keen to delve deeper into the region’s wide wild world of telecoms.

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