VEON is a NASDAQ and Euronext Amsterdam-listed international telecommunications enterprise and a global internet service provider based in the Netherlands, ensuring connectivity to more than 220 million people in nine different countries.
Biggest indicator for VEON right now: Russia-Ukraine Crisis
What really puts VEON in the spotlight is its position in the Russia-Ukraine Crisis. Since it employs over 60,000 people worldwide, about 33,000 of which are based in Russia and Ukraine.
VEON’s position in the conflict
As of the last year VEON received 51% of its revenues from Russia and 14% from Ukraine. VEON, under the name Kyivstar, handles the biggest cell phone service provider in Ukraine, employing around 4000 people and holding a 25% market share. On the flip side, VEON also holds the position of the second-largest telecommunications network in Russia, under the title of Beeline. Having employed over 29,000 people in Russia, Beeline turns out to have a prominent commercial value.
This puts VEON in a very interesting position. As it has to maneuver its decisions and operate so as to neutralize the reverberations of sanctions and political challenges on both sides of the conflict. Efforts are being made in this regard.
Reassuring Investors and Stakeholders
The company has made efforts to keep its businesses on both sides of the conflict separated and has consecutively been issuing reassurances for confidence to its shareholders and investors.
The press release issued on 2 March 2022 delineated VEON’s strong and secure liquidity status, owing to the $1.5 Billion HQ cash and deposit balance and $0.8 Billion undrawn credit under the Revolving Credit Facility (RCF). No outstanding or additional debt maturities remain for VEON during the year 2022.
Maneuvering the impact of Sanctions
In a recent newsletter issued on 15 March 2022, the Chief Executive Officer of VEON, Kaan Terzioğlu reportedly clarified that VEON is not a direct subject of sanctions enforced by either of the European Union, the United States, or the United Kingdom. Also, none of its stakeholders has been influenced by the current situation in a specific business context.
This news came after the company distanced itself from Mikhail Fridman and Petr Aven, following the exaction of sanctions on them on 28 February 2022 (an event that outlined a big fall in the stock value up to 56%). It was further elucidated that both of the members resigned from their designation of the Board of Directors of LetterOne Investment. Furthermore, Mr. Fridman also resigned from his position as the Board of VEON.
Exhibiting high Social Responsibility in a Humanitarian Crisis
Terzioğlu, who as the Turkcell CEO has experience dealing with the Syrian refugee crisis has been making efforts to ensure connectivity and maintain uninterrupted access to information since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on Feb 24, 2022. 85% of the telecom network has been kept functional in Ukraine, thanks to thousands of VEON employees working from bomb shelters. Mobile data is also being used to estimate the number of refugees. Mobile accounts have been topped up free of charge. To top it all off, VEON released an official statement of the board of Directors calling for a peaceful and lasting resolution of the Russia-Ukraine Crisis on humanitarian grounds.
Thanks to the efforts being made by VEON to pilot effectively, the company made a comeback with the current boom of 22.13%. The stock value stands at 0.65 USD as of Friday’s closing of the regular trading session and the company seems to be in good standing in the present state of macroeconomic uncertainty.