Numericable outlines plans for SFR

French cable operator Numericable has said it has received financial backing from nine international banks for its planned acquisition of Vivendi-backed SFR. 

Numericable’s €11.75 billion offer is to be financed by a capital increase of €3.4billion and €8.35 billion in debt.

Numericable and its main shareholder Altice said that their objective is to create a national fixed and mobile high-speed internet champion, based on the conviction that the convergence of fixed and mobile networks meets a growing demand for services across multiple screens in each home.

Numericable and Altice have emphasised a series of commitments designed to win the approval of the French government. They have committed to pass 12 million homes with fibre by 2017 and 15 million by 2020 and to create new employment as well as committing not to increase the price of 4G and to deliver better prices for fixed high-speed internet services.

The group said it would achieve revenue growth of between 2% and 5% in the medium terms with an EBITDA margin of about 40%, while capex will represent about 20% of revenues. Numericable has targeted synergies at a run-rate of up to € billion a year.

Numericable also said that the combined group would remain based in France and would be quoted on the Paris stock exchange.

The new entity, which will combine Numericable’s 9.9 million homes passed, including 8.5 million triple-play homes passed and 5.2 million passed by fibre, with SFR’s 3G and 4G mobile networks and 1.6 million homes passed by its own fibre network, will operate under the SFR brand.

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