Hutchison launches IPO

Hutchison Telecommunications (Australia) Ltd (HTAL) yesterday launched its Initial Public Offer (IPO), outlining its plans to list on the Australian Stock Exchange in the middle of next month.

The company will offer 140 million shares representing 29.5 per cent of issued capital.

Australian institutions and selected international institutions will be offered 95 million shares and retail clients of syndicate brokers, HTAL employees and selected HTAL dealers will be offered 45 million shares.

Existing shareholders Hutchison Communications (Australia) and Leanrose will retain 54 per cent and 16.5 per cent of issued capital.

Proceeds are predicted to be about $215 million, half of which will be used to service debts and loans, and half will finance development of HTAL's CDMA network and other business requirements. The company's CDMA network is scheduled for launch in the first half of 2000.

According to Barry Roberts-Thomson, managing director, HTAL, the company expects the CDMA network to have 400,000 subscribers, and to generate 50 per cent of HTAL's revenues by 2002.

HTAL will continue to develop its GSM offerings, Roberts-Thomson said.

Meanwhile, the company expects to complete rebranding to the Orange brand across all its products and services by the end of 1999.