Altice in fibre network selloff
Altice, Portugal’s largest telecoms provider, is considering the sale of its fibre network estimated to be worth 5Bn.
There are three funds interested in the purchase; Brookfield, KKR, Macquarie and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board according to Bloomberg which adds that the interested parties have valued the MEO network at between 3.5Bn and 4Bn.
The intention to sell has come from Altice Europe as advanced by Reuters in early February which the telecoms giant planning an auction to sell the asset as it had done in France with SRF.
Blomberg states that Altice Europe is trying to net 5Bn or more for the asset despite the fact that the funds estimate its value to be more than 1Bn less.
Altice is expected to accept offers in the form of formal proposals in March which, according to Blomberg has yet to decide the exact dimension of the package it wants to sell.
In February, the business daily Negócios contacted MEO and an official source commented simply that the company considers the “country’s fibre optic network is one of the strategic pillars for Portugal” and insisted that “any future operation would not put the direction of this project at risk, even if private, considering it in the national interest.”
According to the Directorate-General of Education and Science Statistics (DGEEC), Altice Portugal is the group which most invests in Research, Development and Innovation in Portugal.
Altice Portugal also leads the way regarding human resources allocated to innovation. In an interview with Essential Business last month, its CEO Alexandre Fonseca said that Altice Portugal was particularly proud to be recognized publically by such a transparent and objective independent entity for the great amount of investment it has made in researching and developing truly innovative products.