Dutch-based Altice Europe is planning to raise EUR2.5 billion (USD2.9 billion) by selling stakes in its telecoms towers businesses in France and Portugal, with a view to reducing its debt of EUR31 billion. Altice said it had entered an exclusivity agreement with US firm KKR to form a new French company called SFR TowerCo, comprising 10,198 sites operated by Altice’s French subsidiary SFR Group (Altice France). The private equity firm will have a 49.99% stake. The deal, expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2018, will also involve building 1,200 new towers, which would generate EUR250 million in proceeds for SFR within four years. The planned transaction values SFR TowerCo at an enterprise value of EUR3.6 billion.
Altice’s Portuguese subsidiary will also sell a 75% stake in a newly-formed Portuguese towers business, called Towers of Portugal (TOP), to Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners and Horizon Equity Partners. PT Portugal (MEO) currently has 2,961 sites, and the deal (expected to close in Q3 2018) includes an agreement for the deployment of 400 new towers.