PCCW bidders look to potential Asian partners

28 Jun 2006

The two firms bidding for the telecoms and media assets of Hong Kong’s PCCW have begun sounding out potential Asian partners in an attempt to overcome opposition from PCCW’s 20% shareholder China Netcom, reports The Business. Approaches from Australia’s Macquarie Bank and US private equity firm Texas Pacific have not been welcomed by the majority state-owned Chinese operator, despite Macquarie reportedly offering it a 50% stake in any new company created from a deal. Reports in the Hong Kong press have emerged this week that other Asian-based firms are potential buy-out partners, including China Unicom and Singapore Telecom (SingTel). It has also been reported that a third group of private equity investors – Ashmore Investment, Spinnaker Capital and Clearwater Capital – is likely to register its interest in PCCW’s assets.