Brookfield Infrastructure and Cincinnati Bell have amended their merger agreement. The original deal was signed before New Years, but another bidder emerged a month later to shake things up with a higher price. But Brookfield clearly had something in reserve and has matched and raised that bid.
Under the new agreement, Brookfield will buy Cincinnati Bell for $12.50 per share, a $2 boost from two months ago and $0.50 above the rival bid. That’s now a 62% premium above the pre-deal closing price from back in December and puts the current total transaction price tag at $2.745B including debt.
The deal is now in the hands of shareholders again, but given the recent travails of the stock markets that they have been insulated from, I do wonder if they’re going asking too many questions right now. Even still, that rival bidder could theoretically chime in again, or another could appear. Hence, the break-up fee also increased from $17.97M to $21.39M.
Cincinnati Bell operates deep fiber and other infrastructure in not just the greater Cincinnati metro area but also Hawaii, as a result of its purchase of Hawaiian Telecom a few years ago. They have 1.3M homes on-net via 17K route miles of metro and last mile fiber.
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