Hutchison seeks $600 million for 3G

Hutchison Telecommunications needs to raise at least $600 million to develop its 3G network and services.

The telco has announced its intention to proceed with a pro rata renounceable Rights Issue of Convertible Notes to raise the money.

Hutchison Whampoa (HWL) subsidiary Hutchison Communication (Australia), which holds 57.82 per cent of all voting shares in Hutchison Telecommunications, intends to take up its full entitlement under the Rights Issue.

HWL will underwrite the outstanding balance.

Hutchison 3G Australia, a joint venture established as part of an alliance with Telecom Corporation of New Zealand (TCNZ), owns the network which is scheduled for a staged commercial launch by the end 2002 or early 2003.

Kevin Russel, Hutchison Telecommunications CEO, said: "The Rights Issue provides our shareholders with an opportunity to participate in the funding of the company's future growth, with the potential to convert this investment into an equity holding at a later date.

"We believe 3G represents the next phase of growth in the wireless industry and Hutchison is well positioned to be a leading entrant in this market."

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