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Astorg Partners takes majority stake in M7 Group

Joël Lacourte

Joël Lacourte

Private equity group Astorg Partners is acquiring a majority stake in pan-European pay TV provider M7 Group from investors led by Providence Equity Partners.

Astorg, which specialises in European mid-market buyouts, will acquire a majority stake in M7’s Luxembourg-based holding company CDS Topco BV. Following the close of the transaction, Providence and Airbridge Investments BV will continue to be significant minority shareholders of M7.

M7 operates DTH pay TV businesses in Belgium, the Netherlands, Austria, Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia and recently agreed to acquire Eutelsat’s KabelKiosk operation in Germany. Providence’s stake in the company, which currently has about three million subscribers, dates from 2007.

Terms of the transaction, which is expected to close in the third quarter, were not disclosed. Deutsche Bank and BNP Paribas served as financial advisors to Providence and Emendo Capital advised Astorg

“This transaction demonstrates the strength of M7’s business, which has undergone a significant transformation under Providence’s ownership. We look forward to working closely with the Astorg team as well as our current shareholders to continue on our growth trajectory in the years to come,” said Marco Visser, CEO of M7.

“M7 will take Astorg Partners one step further in its Pan-European strategy. M7 combines all the qualities of a performing asset: excellent track record, professional management, high growth and strong customer franchises. We are delighted to join forces with the architects of this success,” said Joël Lacourte, managing partner at Astorg.