United Group to acquire Vivacom

8 Nov 2019

Netherlands-based telecoms and media firm United Group, owned by BC Partners, has agreed to acquire Bulgarian telecoms operator Vivacom (BTC) for an undisclosed sum. According to a joint statement, ‘the transaction is expected to close in the second quarter of 2020, subject to conditions, including receipt of applicable anti-trust approvals.’

As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, in mid-2019 Vivacom majority owner Spas Roussev confirmed that the telco was up for sale, with Lazard appointed to sell the business, valued at around EUR1.2 billion (USD1.35 billion). Vivacom is currently owned by holding company Viva Telecom Bulgaria, itself a subsidiary of Luxembourg-based InterV Investment, which in turn is wholly owned by Viva Telecom (Luxembourg), whose main shareholder (46%) is listed as Spas Roussev (via Viva Edge Telecom). Other minority investors are listed as follows: VTB Bank, Delta Capital Investments (controlled by Milen Velchev, Georgi Velchev and Krasimir Katev), Michael Tennenbaum and companies managed by Mezzanine Management Central Europe II. The telco was sold to its current owners in late 2015, following an auction triggered by a default on a loan repayment to VTB Capital by a Luxembourg holding company.

Bulgaria, United Group, Vivacom (BTC)