Cable and telecom investor Altice has hit out at Bouygues’ rejection of its €10 billion offer for Bouygues Telecom and has accused the French conglomerate of failing to engage with it before presenting the offer to its board.
Rejecting suggestions that the bid was not serious and was entirely dependent on debt, Altice said that its offer was fully financed with commitments form BNP, JP Morgana and Morgan Stanley and that it would have bee financed through a mix of debt, shares and cash.
Specifically, it said, its offer comprised about €3.5-€4 billion in debt, about €6-€6.5 billion in capital comprising €3.5-€4 billion in asset sales and a capital incrase reserved for Bouygues group, and €2.5 billion in cash.
Altice said the offer represented 15 times Bouygues Telecom’s 2015 EBITDA and 25 times Bouygues’ own estimates for the unit’s 2017 EBITDA. It also represented a multiple of between two and three times the average value for similar assets in the European market, said Altice.
Patrick Drahi’s group pointed out that it had engaged with Free to dispose of assets and assuage regulatory risks and had committed to maintain employment levels at Bouygues Telecom in line with what it had done with regards to the acquisition of SFR.
Separately Altice has announced a cross-border merger with a newly formed Dutch entity that will see the current Altice entity taken over and disappear.
Dexter Goei, CEO of the Altice Group said: “Pursuant to the Merger, the Group will benefit from a powerful equity acquisition currency without prejudicing voting control of the company’s founding shareholder group. This will further strengthen Altice’s position in the next phase of value-enhancing growth.”
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18th February 2019