CVC Capital Partners has sold a 23.83% stake in full service provider Sunrise Communications to freenet, Germany’s largest ‘network-independent’ provider of mobile communications, for around EUR714 million (USD804.62 million). freenet purchased approximately 10.7 million shares in Sunrise at a price of CHF72.95 (USD74.98) per share. The sale included the option for a further 0.73% stake under the same conditions, which freenet says it intends to take next month.
Commenting on the deal, freenet’s CEO Christoph Vilanek said: ‘We have been watching the development of Sunrise Communications very closely for some time now. We understand their business model and, with regard to cash orientation and the financial profile, we can see strong parallels with our profile on the capital market.’
The sale will make freenet the single largest shareholder in Sunrise. Sunrise’s shares are traded on the SIX Swiss Exchange and only one other shareholder holds more than 10% of the company’s shares. Germany’s Allianz announced in February 2016 that it had increased its stake to 10.02%, from 5.80% at end-2015.