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Sanoma to sell Welho

Sanoma has agreed to sell its Finnish cable operator to telco DNA.

DNA will conduct a directed share issue to Sanoma, which will take a 21% stake in Welho to become its second-largest owner. Welho’s selling price is €200m, meaning Sanoma will record a non-recurring capital gain of approximately €185m. The transaction is subject to approval by the competition authorities and the Council of State. Sanoma said both approvals are expected during the summer.

“We will gain a share in a very profitable and competitive company with great growth potential. This is a long-term strategic ownership for us as we believe that media and telecommunication businesses are converging further. Through this transaction we are able to participate in developing the industry,” Hannu Syrjänen, president and CEO of Sanoma said.

Welho’s net sales for 2009 reached €67m and it employed 205 people. The cable operator ended the first quarter of 2010 with a total of 163,000 customers, up 7,000 year-on-year.

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