Denmark’s incumbent telecoms operator TDC has agreed to merge with its majority owner, consortium of private equity groups Nordic Telephone Company (NTC), Reuters reports. According to TDC, the purpose of the merger is to simplify the group structure and to optimise the telco’s capital structure. Earlier this week NTC initiated a process of evaluating ‘strategic alternatives’ for its ownership in the telco. Bjaarne Graven, head of funds at Danish pension fund ATP, which owns about 5.5% of TDC, said the latest move is another indication that NTC is planning a floatation of TDC. ‘This is a clear sign they are preparing for an IPO (initial public offering). They would not need to optimise the capital structure for an industrial sale,’ he said. According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, NTC holds an 87.9% stake in TDC. It is made up of private equity groups Apax Partners, the Blackstone Group, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, Permira Advisers and Providence Equity Partners. The consortium acquired TDC in December 2005 in a EUR13 billion (USD19.5 billion) leveraged buy-out deal. The merger is expected to be adopted by TDC’s board before year-end.