Iraqi telco Asiacell shares surge on bourse debut

BAGHDAD, Feb 4 (Reuters) - Shares in Iraqi mobile telephone

operator Asiacell jumped the maximum 10 percent on their Baghdad

bourse debut on Monday after investors in the company raised

$1.24 billion in Iraq's largest-ever share offer.

The shares were trading at 24.2 dinars at 0707 GMT on the

Iraq Stock Exchange (ISX). A total of 780,000 shares had changed

hands as of that time. The shares are allowed to trade within a

10 percent range up or down, according to bourse rules.

In a public offer that closed on Sunday, investors in

Asiacell - majority-owned by Qatar Telecom (Qtel) -

sold 67.5 billion shares at 22.0 Iraqi dinars each, offloading a

quarter of the company's share capital.

It was the first big share offer in Iraq since the U.S.-led

invasion of 2003, and largest equity offer in the Middle East

since 2008.