Blue Label confident of Cell C deal in August

23 June 2017

Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

Blue Label plans to acquire 45% of Cell C for R5.5 billion. Blue Label Telecoms is looking to finalise the Cell C recapitalisation deal in August.

In a statement issued on the JSE's Stock Exchange News Service yesterday, Blue Label said its board has signed the final equity transaction agreements to the recapitalisation of Cell C.

Blue Label plans to acquire 45% of SA's third largest mobile operator for R5.5 billion. The mobile operator announced its recapitalisation plans on 10 December 2015.

Blue Label has obtained irrevocable undertakings from approximately 53% of shareholders to vote in favour of the Cell C recapitalisation deal, including the vendor consideration placement of R2.75 billion, the company says in the statement.

It adds that if the deal goes through, Cell C's net borrowings will be reduced to a maximum of R6 billion from R8 billion.

There will be an increase in the Blue Label vendor consideration placement from R2 billion to R2.75 billion, at a price of R15 per Blue Label share, it points out.

"The Cell C recapitalisation is anticipated to be implemented during the first week of August 2017 as it is subject to Blue Label shareholder approval in a general meeting," says Blue Label.

Fellow Cell C suitor Net1 UEPS Technologies earlier this month said it will no longer invest R2 billion in Blue Label Telecoms.

In October 2016, the companies announced the planned deal which would see Net1 effectively buy a 15% stake in Blue Label for R2 billion.

Net1 will, however, continue to pursue its acquisition of a 15% stake in mobile operator Cell C for a consideration of R2 billion, a deal it announced in March 2017. At the time, Blue Label, Net1, Cell C and the debt providers of Cell C entered into a binding umbrella restructure agreement which also included Blue Label acquiring a 45% stake in Cell C for R5.5 billion.

Source: ITWeb