Sanoma to sell Welho to DNA for EUR200 million

1 Jun 2010

Alternative operator DNA Finland is to acquire Welho, the Finnish cable and broadband unit of Nordic media group Sanoma, Reuters reports. Sanoma has said that it is divesting the subsidiary in order to streamline its portfolio, and under the terms of the deal, thought to be worth around EUR200 million (USD245 million), the media conglomerate said it expects a gain of around EUR185 million once regulatory approval has been received, which is expected by mid-2010. Further, Sanoma also revealed that it intends to use the funds generated by the sale to take a 21% stake in DNA, making it the second largest shareholder in the Finnish operator. For its part, the deal will see DNA, which started life in the northern and central regions of the country, raise its profile in the capital by offering cable TV services over Welho’s cable infrastructure in Helsinki, and the tie-up will likely increase its rivalry with Elisa. Commenting on the deal, Sanoma CEO Hannu Syrjanen said: ‘We will gain a share in a very profitable and competitive company with great growth potential … This is a long-term strategic ownership for us as we believe that media and telecommunication businesses are converging further. Through this transaction we are able to participate in developing the industry.’

Finland, DNA Finland, SWelcom Television (Welho)