United Internet decides to acquire 25.1% stake in Versatel's parent company
- Investment in operator of Germany's second-largest fiber-optic network
- Continuation of good partnership with KKR
The Management Board and Supervisory Board of United Internet AG today decided to exercise its option to purchase 25.1% of shares in the parent company of Versatel AG, VictorianFibre Holding & Co. S.C.A., a company belonging to funds managed by Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. L.P. (together with its associated companies "KKR").
This option was granted to United Internet when selling its Versatel shares to KKR in May 2011. At the time, United Internet's sale paved the way for a delisting of the company. Following its successful delisting and the completion of restructuring measures, the key earnings figures and free cash flow of Versatel have improved. KKR and United Internet have been closely accompanying this development over the past months.
The shares are to be purchased in December 2012 by exercising the option and converting the vendor loan (amounting to EUR 59.8 million) granted at the time to KKR as part of the sale into shares in Versatel's parent company.
"By exercising the option, we will be securing a significant investment in one of the leading infrastructure suppliers with Germany's second-largest fiber-optic network," states Ralph Dommermuth in his summary of the reasons behind the planned share purchase. "We are looking forward to continuing the good cooperation with KKR and Versatel's management during the ongoing development of the company."
United Internet AG
With over 11.5 million fee-based customer contracts and more than 30 million ad-financed free accounts, United Internet AG is Europe's leading internet specialist. At the heart of United Internet is a high-performance "Internet Factory" with over 6,000 employees, of which more than 1,600 are engaged in product management, development and data centers. In addition to the high sales strength of its established brands (1&1, GMX, WEB.DE, united-domains, Fasthosts, InterNetX, Sedo and affilinet), United Internet stands for outstanding operational excellence with around 42 million customer accounts worldwide. United Internet also holds equity interests in listed companies and owns numerous investments in young internet companies.