KPN is moving ahead with the sale of its Belgian BASE subsidiary and expecting first round bids by the end of this month, according to a Dow Jones Newswires report.
This decision to continue with the sale is said, according to unnamed sources familiar with the situation, to have put under stress KPN's relationship with América Móvil which now owns 27.7 per cent of KPN,
While private equity firms including Providence Equity and Carlyle Group have expressed an interest in bidding for BASE, it is unclear if this will translate into formal offers given likely opposition from América Móvil.
Advisers for potential bidders have told Dow Jones Newswires that they are uncertain as to whether a sale will go ahead if KPN's largest shareholder objects to the sale of BASE.
During the efforts by América Móvil to build its stake holding in KPN, the Mexican-based company said it was keen to acquire a larger share in the Dutch incumbent because "the Netherlands and Belgium have high gross domestic product per capita and consumers with relatively low debt compared with other areas of Europe."
"These are the countries that are in better shape from a fundamental perspective," América Móvil CFO Carlos Garcia Moreno said in a June teleconference.
The potential sale of BASE is also said to have caught the attention of Belgian cable operator Telnet Group, which is working with the European private equity firm Cinven on a possible bid.
- see this Dow Jones Newswires article
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