EQT Infra makes $2.3bn offer for Vocus takeover


EQT Infrastructure has submitted a $2.3bn takeover proposal for Australian fibre network services provider Vocus Group.

The firm has offered to buy all of the listed company’s shares at A$5.25 per share in cash, subject to shareholder agreement, regulatory approval and other conditions. The offer would provide a 35 per cent premium on Vocus’ closing share price on May 24.

Vocus’ board has decided to grant non-exclusive due diligence access to EQT to enable the firm to submit a formal binding proposal, a process which is expected to take a number of weeks.

The board also emphasised that there is no guarantee that the offer will result in a deal. Vocus has appointed UBS as its financial adviser and Allens as its legal adviser for the bidding process.

Vocus operates Australia’s second largest inter-capital network and also operates an extensive network in New Zealand.

The company’s terrestrial network covers around 30,000km and is supported by 4,600km of submarine cable connecting Singapore, Indonesia and Australia as well as 2,100km of submarine cable between offshore oil and gas facilities in the Timor Sea.

Buyout majors KKR and Affinity Equity Partners previously made matching $1.7bn bids for Vocus, but would later withdraw their offers after company’s third profit warning over a nine-month period.

EQT recently closed its largest-ever infrastructure fund on €9bn of commitments in March this year.

EQT’s infra business has 16 active potfolio investments and is led by head of real assets and deputy managing partner Lennart Blecher, according to its website.

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