KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 26 (Reuters) - Malaysia's largest mobile phone operator by market value Axiata Group Bhd is planning an initial public offering (IPO) of its telecommunication tower assets estimated to be worth up to $500 million, three people familiar with the deal said.
CIMB Group Holdings Bhd and Goldman Sachs Group Inc are involved in the offer, which is expected late next year, the sources said. They declined to be identified as the discussions were confidential.
Axiata officials were not immediately available for comment.
Telecommunication firms currently trade at six times earnings before interests, taxes, depreciation and amortisation while tower companies trade at 10 times.
The proposed IPO adds to the list of offerings expected from Malaysia next year and which include a $1 billion listing of independent power producer Malakoff Bhd and an $800 million IPO of property developer Medini Iskandar Malaysia Sdn Bhd.
Malaysia was the biggest IPO market in the Asia-Pacific excluding Japan last year, hosting two of the world's biggest listings - the $3.2 billion IPO of Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd and $2.1 billion listing of IHH Healthcare Bhd. (Reporting By Niluksi Koswanage and Yantoultra Ngui in KUALA LUMPUR and Saeed Azhar in SINGAPORE; Editing by Miral Fahmy)