12/11/2008 12:17:00 PM
20:20 expected to acquire Turkish distributor in January
20:20 Mobile is close to making its latest foray into the overseas market with the acquisition of a Turkish distributor, Mobile can reveal.
The distributor has identified the Turkish market as its number one overseas priority. 20:20 has already tabled bids for a number of potential acquisitions under the management of CEO Meinie Oldersma.
A spokesman confirmed: ‘We are looking at a number of specific proposals and we expect to have some progress in the early part of 2009.
We are of the view that the Turkish market has a lot of opportunity.’
The distributor’s keen focus on the Turkish
market led it to bid for a Vodafone supply contract – which has reportedly been won, in recent days, by rival Brightstar.
20:20’s head of international business, George Steur, is understood to be negotiating with potential targets after receiving backing from Oldersma and finance chief Nick Smith.
One source said: ‘We’ve narrowed the options down in Turkey and are very close to a deal now.’As long as there are no glitches, the distributor will add a Turkish subsidiary in the first two months of 2009.
This is to be its second acquisition under Doughty Hanson’s ownership after buying the Swedish business, Axcom – negotiated by previous CEO Mark Ryan in 2007.
The Turkish subsidiary will add to existing 20:20 businesses in Dubai (UAE), France and Spain – all three offices were set up without acquisition by John Caudwell, founder of The Caudwell Group, which previously owned 20:20.
Emerging markets are a key priority under Oldersma’s recovery plan. The former 20:20 UK managing director, Trevor Price, was reassigned to a new post as head of the Dubai business in August.
Price is planning to establish the handset distributor in the local Dubai market, but is also looking more broadly at South Asia – including India and Pakistan, and the Middle East and Africa.
Oldersma predicts growth in emerging markets and decline in the domestic UK market.