Proximus has confirmed in a statement that the shareholders of its international wholesale arm Belgacom International Carrier Services (BICS), which include MTN and Swisscom, are exploring a potential sale of 51% of the company’s shares. As part of the transaction, Proximus wants to retain a 49% stake in the business ‘as it is committed to its future development’. The company notes discussions are underway with potential investors, although there is no certainty they will result in an agreement or transaction. According to Belgian newspaper L’Echo, several interested parties placed binding offers with advising bank Citi by the deadline of 15 July.
Founded in 2005 and currently owned by Proximus (57.6%), Swisscom (22.4%) and MTN (20%), BICS generated EBITDA of EUR153 million (USD175 million) on revenues of EUR1.3 billion in 2019, equivalent to approximately a quarter of Proximus group’s turnover and about 8% of EBITDA.