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Telenor Drops as Myanmar Seen Weighing on Earnings: Oslo Mover

Aug. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Telenor ASA, the Nordic region’s largest phone operator, fell the most in almost two weeks in Oslo trading after analysts predicted its Myanmar expansion will curb earnings.

Shares in the Fornebu, Norway-based company declined as much as 0.8 percent, the most since Aug. 6, and fell 0.3 percent to 134 kroner as of 2:50 p.m. in the Norwegian capital. More than 681,000 shares had traded, about 43 percent of the three-month average daily volume.

Telenor faces a “major investment” in Myanmar, Sven Skoeld and Haakan Wranne, analysts at Swedbank AB, said today in a note to clients. While the expansion will boost sales by 7 percent to 8 percent in 2020, earnings before interest and taxes will be little changed over the next two years, according to the analysts, who cut their rating to neutral from buy.

The operator is seeking growth in Russia, India and other parts of Asia as competition intensifies in the Nordic region. Telenor and Ooredoo QSC of Qatar won licenses in June to expand telecommunications in Myanmar, one of the world’s last remaining untapped markets where only about one in 10 has a mobile phone.

“Telenor’s investment in Myanmar is a great opportunity, but in the mid-term, estimates will be lowered,” Skoeld and Wranne said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Stephen Treloar in Oslo at streloar1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Christian Wienberg at cwienberg@bloomberg.net

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