(AOF) – Orange Belgium, the Belgian subsidiary of Orange (+ 0.84% to 9.939 euros), in which it holds 53% of the shares, has announced that it has entered into exclusive negotiations with Nethys for the acquisition of 75% of the capital minus one Voo SA share. The operation will be carried out on the basis of an enterprise value of 1.8 billion euros for 100% of the capital, showing a multiple of EBITDA before synergies of 9.5 times. The Belgian operator specified that it would finance this acquisition by increasing its debt, thanks to the support of Orange SA.
Voo SA is a telecom operator which owns the cable network in the Walloon region and part of the Brussels region. The operator has a portfolio of fixed and mobile telephony, very high speed Internet and television services. With this acquisition, Orange Belgium should thus acquire a very high speed network in the regions concerned and, thus, consolidate the deployment of its convergent strategy in all the countries where the orange group is present.
Orange Belgium won the auction in the face of its big competitor Telenet, whose interest included a “Telco industrial project to stand the test of time in Wallonia and throughout Brussels”.
“The opportunity for cost synergies would probably have been higher for Orange Belgium [plutôt que pour Telenet, ndlr] given the size of its convergent base (all wholesalers) relative to the economy of its own network, Deutsche Bank explains in an analyst note prior to the official announcement of the acquisition.
“Consequently, Orange Belgium potentially had more leeway to make a higher bid for the asset,” concludes the analyst.
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