Saudi Telecom board proposes $8 billion capital increase

DUBAI: Saudi Telecom said on Sunday its board had proposed increasing its capital by 30 billion riyal ($8 billion) to finance growth and expansion plans in its home market, Saudi Arabia, and elsewhere in the region.

The capital increase would involve issuing 30 billion new shares, representing a capital increase of 150%, with shareholders offered 1.5 new shares for each share they owned.

The announcement was made in a statement published to the Saudi stock market.

Saudi Arabia’s government owns 64% of the major telecom through its sovereign wealth fund, the Public Investment Fund.

In a separate statement, Saudi Telecom said its board had recommended cutting its dividend policy which committed it to 1 riyal $0.26) per share per quarter to 0.40 riyal ($0.10).

The statement said the board proposed the change in the three-year dividend policy, which had been in effect since the fourth quarter last year, in response to the proposed share capital increase.

The board would continue to consider additional dividend payments, it said.

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