Turkcell to pay dividends by April
ANKARA – Anadolu AgencyTurkish mobile operator Turkcell shareholders voted on March 26 to finally pay problematic dividends by April 6, which have been on hold since 2010.
“The distribution to shareholders will take place by April 6, 2015 at the latest,” the statement said.
The total dividends built up over the four years through 2014 is close to 4 billion Turkish Liras ($1.5 billion), which is equivalent to 42.5 percent of the company’s profits since 2010, according to the statement.
While the agreement to pay dividends was a step forward for the shareholders, it did not resolve the outstanding question of whether to accept an offer of $2.8 billion from Russian billionaire Mikhail Fridman for a controlling stake in the company.
The offer, made through Fridman’s Turkish company Alfa Group, is about twice the price of Turkcell shares as they are currently traded.
Çukurova Holding, owned by Turkish billionaire Mehmet Emin Karamehmet, and state-run Ziraat Bank, are the two major shareholders in Turkcell who must approve the offer.
These changes come after nearly 10 years of legal battles between Fridman and Karamehmet for control of the company.
Turkcell is currently the largest mobile operator in Turkey.