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Investment firm takes 43% stake in Bulgaria’s Vivacom

European investment firm LIC33 has reportedly bought a 43% stake in Bulgarian telco Vivacom. 

According to a Bloomberg report, LIC33 bought the stake along with 100% of Nurts, Vivacom’s radio and television transmitter unit, and other assets including TV cable licenses.

The total purchase price was for a token value of €1 and includes a commitment to refinance debts to banks, estimated at €900 million, LIC33 chairman Pierre Louvrier reportedly told reporters at a press conference in Bulgaria’s capital, Sofia, on Tuesday.

The news comes after LIC33 initially announced that it was taking over “a majority stake in Vivacom and other leading companies in Bulgaria.”

In a statement issued yesterday, Vivacom said “we are not aware of any transaction or pending transaction involving a majority stake in the company that would lead to change of control as per the indenture.”

However, the firm did say that it is “welcoming an expression of interest by any serious, well-funded and respected potential investor” and that “the process from interest to transaction usually takes multiple months.”

“We will continue to work in order to satisfy our customers, bondholders, employees and regulatory agencies. Our primary and overriding mission and responsibility is to continue working with all stakeholders and strive to provide the best services on the market,” said Vivacom, which is due to publish its 2014 audited financial results on March 30.

LIC33 describes itself as “a group of companies gathering European Union investors, specialised in emerging markets and distressed situations.”

The private capital investment company buys controlling stakes in “target projects”, leverages the potential of the projects, and then aims for an exit within three to five years.

The Vivacom deal is reportedly still subject to regulatory approval.