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MyRepublic NZ, IPO plans in question following Australia exit

While it remains unclear whether its New Zealand operations will go the way of its decision to quit the Australian market, MyRepublic tells ZDNET its strategic refocus and the anticipated global economic downturn may impact its IPO timeline.
Written by Eileen Yu, Senior Contributing Editor

MyRepublic says its business "refocus", alongside other factors such as the anticipated global economic downturn, may have an impact on its IPO (initial public offering) timeline. It stresses that its recent decision to quit the Australian market is unrelated, but remains unclear on whether its operations in New Zealand will remain unaffected. 

The Singapore-based broadband and mobile services provider announced over the Christmas weekend that it was exiting Australia, as part of efforts to pivot towards profitability and cut its operational costs. 

Its residential and business subscribers on the national broadband network (NBN) will be moved to Superloop, with the bulk of migration works expected to be carried out in February next year. 

Asked if it was planning a similar move in New Zealand, where it launched its services in 2014, MyRepublic did not offer a definitive answer. 

Instead, its senior corporate communications manager Adam Rahim told ZDNET the company was refocusing on its Singapore business and would assess "relevant business opportunities" as these emerged. 

"Alongside this, we will continue to navigate and source for M&A (merger and acquisition) opportunities across geographies that are closely aligned to our pivot strategy," Rahim said.

MyRepublic's team in New Zealand, where it offers broadband and mobile services, remains active on the company's Twitter profile, with the latest reply posted earlier today. 

Rahim did confirm that its plans for an IPO might face a delay, but noted that this was not the result of its decision to exit the Australian market. Rather, the company's efforts to identify potential business opportunities as well as other circumstances, including the "impending global economic downturn", might impact the timeline of its IPO. 

"The impact of such factors on our IPO timeline, if any, is a separate matter from the sale of our Australian business," he said. 

Elaborating on the transfer agreement with Superloop, Rahim said discussions would include possible redeployment of some 30 of its employees in Australia to Superloop. 

Asked about its services in Indonesia, he said MyRepublic was run by a licensed operator in the Asian market and, hence, operated as a separate entity. 

"[MyRepublic] will focus on our Singapore broadband and mobile businesses," he reiterated.

The vendor in February said its renewed business vision and operating model would help lay the groundwork for an IPO, with CEO Malcolm Rodrigues touting the start of "a new MyRepublic" and its ambition to be "the best-performing digital telco" in Singapore and the region. 

In September last year, Singapore telco StarHub acquired a 50.1% stake in MyRepublic's local broadband business. The $162.8 million deal saw the latter's business unit subsumed as a StarHub subsidiary and pushed StarHub's share of the Singapore broadband market to 40%. 

In a June 2021 interview with ZDNET, MyRepublic said it was seeking out new revenue in the enterprise space, which offered significant growth potential for the company. It said it would beef up its service offerings in the market segment, with particular focus on cybersecurity.

Its franchise business in Indonesia is run via a partnership with the Sinar Mas Group.

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