Connection between Bahman Group and Iran’s TCI

In September 2009, 50% plus one share of the shares of Iran Telecommunication Company (TCI, in Persian – Sherkat Mokhaberat Iran) were offered to the public. The shares worth about 7.8 Billion dollars were in the space of a half an hour (in what was the largest transaction ever to take place in the Iranian stock exchange), by a consortium called Tose’e-ye E’temad-e Mobin. The consortium which bought TCI’s controlling shares, was comprised of three companies: Tose’e-ye E’temad Investment Company, Shaharyar Mahestan and Iran Mobin (Gostaresh Electronic Mobin Iran).

The shareholding was divided between the three companies in following manner:
Tose’e-ye E’temad Investment Company – 46%
Sharyar Mahestan – 8%
Iran Mobin controls the remaining 46% shares of the consortium.

At the time, the consortium denied any IRGC presence among its shareholders. However, it seems that both companies are affiliated with the Bahman group.

According to financial reports from December 2007, the Bahman Group owned 59.9% of Tose’e-ye E’temad Investment Company’s shares.

In addition, at the time the consortium purchased TCI’s controlling shares, Tose’e-ye E’temad Investment Company’s board of directors was comprised of companies which are subsidiaries of the Bahman Group.

As for Sharyar Mahestan, it is also affiliated with both the Bahman Group and Bonayd Sepah. Both Tose’e-ye E’temad Investment Company and Sharyar Mahestan were members of the Bahman Group’s board of directors in 2011 and 2012 (Sharyar Mahestan’s representative in the board was Masoud Mehrdadi).

On August 15, 2015 Fars news agency, considered to be the semi-official news agency of the Iranian Government, referred to both companies as subsidiaries of Bonyad Sepah. Iran Mobin, according to various media reports, Iran Mobin is affiliated with the “Executive Headquarters of Imam’s Directive”.

The IRGC as well as the supreme leader were able to take control over the TCI Company. By controlling TCI and its subsidiary companies, the IRGC is able to control not only Iran’s fixed-line communications but also Iran’s largest cellular phone operator (MCI) as well as internet provider. In addition, in May 2012, TCI bought Talya, a company which controls a pre-paid mobile network in Iran (which utilizes software as well as hardware products made by, among others, Siemens, Alcatel and Ericsson).

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