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Sunrise optimistic on completing Liberty Global deal in Q4

Swiss service provider Sunrise says it has been “broadly supported” its acquisition of Liberty Global’s Swiss unit by investors and expects the deal to be closed in the fourth Quarter following a final regulatory approval.

Sunrise CEO Olaf Swantee has already said he believed the deal could win shareholder approval despite resistance from the company’s largest shareholder Freenet, which has a 24.5% stake in the company, amid concerns about the price paid to take over UPC Switzerland, which has struggled to retain subscribers in a competitive market.

Sunrise shareholders will decide at an EGM whether to back a capital increase to finance the deal.

Despite the deal having yet to be approved, Sunrise said it had already started integration planning and was confident that synergies could be realised.

Sunrise’s existing customer base included 252,000 TV customers at the end of Q1, up from 221,000 last year, and 472,000 fixed broadband customers, up from 431,000, a s well as a more substantial and growing post-paid mobile base and a declining pre-paid base.

The company posted revenues of CHF447 million (€394 million) for the quarter, down from CHF458 million thanks to lower hardware and hubbing sales. Adjusted EBITDA was up from CHF140 million to CHF158 million.