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Zegona keeps options open as MásMóvil outbids for Yoigo

Zegona Communications, owner of Spanish regional cable operator Telecable, has conceded that MásMóvil, its rival in the acquisition battle for Yoigo, has submitted a higher bid for the TeliaSonera-backed mobile operator.

Zegona said that despite reaching a deal with TeliaSonera within the period of its exclusive talks with the Nordic telco, it had failed to strike an agreement with Yoigo’s minority shareholders.

Zegona said that it had been informed that there is “another bidder interested in acquiring Yoigo” that is “willing to offer a price higher than that which Zegona considers to be fair and reasonable” for the operator, given the state of its business and its own disciplined approach to valuation.

The UK-based cable and telecom investor noted that the MásMóvil bid is still conditional on due diligence and its ability to secure funding. It said it would therefore remain engaged in the Yoigo transaction until the situation become clearer.

MásMóvil is to hold a shareholders’ meeting this Thursday that will be asked to approve a €230 million capital increase to fund part of the transaction, According to Spanish newspaper Expansión, sources close to Zegona have indicated that the inclusion of the capital increase in the agenda could raise legal questions.

According to Expansión, MásMóvil last week sent a notification to the regulator of Spain’s alternative stock market, where its shares are listed, clarifying that the inclusion of the item in its agenda was made on time and in line with the rules, following a petition by shareholder Neo-Sky 2002.

Yoigo is 76.5%-owned by TeliaSonera, with the remainder owned by ACS, FCC and Abengoa.