The private equity group Kohlberg Kravis Roberts has made a bid for the Australian service provider Vocus. KKR has apparently offered AU$3.50 per share for the company, which works out to a purchase price of $1.66 billion.
Vocus sits in the #4 slot in Australia’s telecom market and has been under siege lately. KKR’s bid came at a premium to the current stock price, but at a steep discount to where it sat last year at this time. And a year ago is when Vocus itself made a big move, buying Nextgen Networks, adding a 17,000km national fiber footprint and some subsea cable assets to its portfolio as part of an aggressive expansion effort.
KKR has been making some interesting moves in international telecom and infrastructure, ones that the public markets have been less enamored with. Earlier this year, for instance, they bought a stake in Telxius, the division of Telefonica. There’s no guarantee of course that their pursuit of Vocus will succeed, as other suitors may decide to make their presence felt first.
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