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TDC confirms Sunrise sale to CVC for $3.25bn

20 сентября 2010

Danish telecommunications provider TDC A/S said Friday it has sold Swiss unit Sunrise Communications AG, Switzerlands's second-biggest operator after Swisscom AG, to private equity firm CVC Capital Partners for CHF3.3 billion ($3.25 billion), leading it to cut its full-year guidance.

The Wall Street Journal Thursday reported that a deal was likely as early as Friday, with CVC paying for the acquisition with roughly one-third of its own cash and two-thirds borrowed funds. CVC is paying a relatively modest multiple of six times recent earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization, or Ebitda, for Sunrise, which has little or no debt.

TDC said it expects to post a DKK650 million gain after tax from the sale, with the transaction expected to close in the fourth quarter, subject to regulatory clearance. With the sale, TDC lowered its full-year guidance and now expects revenue in line with 2009, and Ebitda growth of 2%. Previously, full-year revenue was expected to grow 1%-3% and Ebitda 3%-4% compared with last year, the company said.

TDC Chief Executive Henrik Poulsen said the Sunrise divestment is a natural next step in the company's strategy in focusing TDC as a Nordic communications company. The deal marks TDC's exit from the Swiss market.

CVC Capital Partners wasn't immediately available to comment.

Last year TDC, which held Sunrise for nearly ten years, and France Telecom attempted to merge their Swiss operations but the move ultimately failed due to regulatory opposition.

TDC provides fixed-line and mobile phone services, Internet and TV to both residential and business customers in Denmark and the Nordic region.

The company, which is owned by private equity firms Blackstone Group, Permira, Kohlberg, Kravis, Roberts & Co., Providence and Apax Partners, has been carrying out a strategic review with a raft of banks for several months, with a public listing previously seen as the most likely option. That prospect looked to be derailed by the failure of the Swiss merger, however. It wasn't immediately clear whether the Sunrise sale would rekindle the IPO process.

The private equity firms bought TDC in 2005 for around $15 billion, and about 12% of its shares are still quoted on the Copenhagen Stock Exchange.

In early trade Friday, TDC shares rose 5.9%, or DKK2.46 to DKK44.45 in Copenhagen.

Deutsche Bank and BNP Paribas acted as advisors to CVC Capital Partners, while Morgan Stanley and UBS acted as advisors to TDC.

Источник: Total Telecom

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