Amsterdam and New York (February 25, 2011) - VimpelCom Ltd. (“VimpelCom” or the “Company”) (NYSE: VIP) today announced that Glass Lewis & Co., a leading independent proxy advisory firm, recommends that VimpelCom shareholders vote “FOR” approval of the issuance of VimpelCom common shares and convertible preferred shares and the increase of VimpelCom’s authorized share capital needed to complete the combination of VimpelCom and Wind Telecom S.p.A. (“Wind Telecom”) (the “Transaction”).
Glass Lewis published its recommendation on February 24, 2011 stating that: “Decisions regarding a company’s business operations are best left to the judgment of the Board. We believe that the Company should be provided the flexibility to use its equity in a manner that could provide funding for its operations and enhance shareholder value.”
Alexander Izosimov, Chief Executive Officer of VimpelCom, commented: “The Glass Lewis recommendation clearly underscores the merits of the combination, as well as importance of the due diligence and support of the Company’s Supervisory Board. The expansion of our growth platform is strategically compelling and financially attractive and we move forward with confidence that our shareholders will support the Transaction at the upcoming Special General Meeting.”
The Special General Meeting of VimpelCom is scheduled to take place on March 17, 2011 to approve the issuance of up to 325,639,827 VimpelCom common shares and 305,000,000 convertible preferred shares and the increase of VimpelCom’s authorized share capital needed to complete this transaction.
VimpelCom’s Supervisory Board and Management Board recommend shareholders vote “FOR” the proposals proposal by signing, dating and returning the WHITE voting card received from the Company.
Shareholders who need assistance or have questions about the voting process should call VimpelCom’s proxy solicitor, D.F. King & Co., Inc., toll-free in North America at +1 800 431 9645, toll-free in Continental Europe at 00800 5464 5464, +44 207 920 9700 from other locations, or call collect at +1 212 269 5550.
About Wind Telecom S.p.A. (formerly Weather Investments S.p.A.)
Wind Telecom S.p.A. is a leading international telecommunications company offering mobile, fixed, Internet and international communication services. WIND TELECOM S.p.A. owns 100% of Wind Telecomunicazioni S.p.A. and 51.7% of Orascom Telecom Holding SAE, which in turn operates GSM networks in Algeria, Bangladesh, Egypt, Pakistan, North Korea, and in Canada through its indirect equity ownership in Globalive Wireless. WIND TELECOM S.p.A., through its subsidiaries, is currently serving 117 million subscribers worldwide and is the entry point of choice for both technically advanced attractive markets and high-growth under-penetrated emerging markets.
About Glass Lewis & Co
Glass, Lewis & Co. LLC is the leading independent governance analysis and proxy voting firm, serving institutional investors that collectively manage more than $17 trillion in assets. With research focused on the long-term financial impact of investment and proxy decisions, Glass Lewis empowers institutional investors to make decisions by uncovering and assessing business, legal, governance and accounting risk at more than 18,000 companies in over 80 countries.