Fiber M&A: US Private Equity Buys e|net

October 1st, 2013 by · 2 Comments

In some news that I didn’t initially see and which doesn’t seem to have gotten much press, several investors from the Warren Buffett circle have bought a fiber network operator and builder. Not in the USA, but over in Ireland

TRImage_21 Oct. 01A consortium made up of Granahan McCourt, Oak Hill Advisors, and the family of Walter Scott Jr has purchased e|net from ACT Venture Capital and the company’s founder Michael Tiernan. While privately held, e|net is tasked with operating the Irish state-owned metro area networks in 94 cities and towns across the country.  Beyond that I must confess that I don’t know as much about them as I probably should.

I find it fascinating that Walter Scott Jr., who has served as Chairman of the Board at Level 3 Communications since the beginning, is out there putting more money into fiber. But valuations in Europe are certainly attractive enough to draw in value investors with his perspective.

Financials for the deal were not supplied, but operationally nothing will change for the company. At least for now, as I wonder if the new investors might have further plans in the neighborhood.

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Categories: Mergers and Acquisitions · Metro fiber · Uncategorized

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2 Comments So Far

  • dilemma says:

    Rob as you point out enet doesn’t own the MANs it just operates them on behalf of the State under terms of 15 year concessions, granted in respect of some MANs in 04 and others in 09….. Wonder how consortium thought about renewal risk in its valuation…

  • FibreFanDublin says:

    The MANs have to remain open access. If they build a viable network on top of the assets and retain access to that (which they should given the nature of the agreements in place) they can be a big enough player in the Telco market here. A large number of the places on the MAN list don’t strike me as sustainable without government money though.

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