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HK's richest man sells fixed-line services for HK$14.5b

chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2017-07-31 16:38

HK's richest man sells fixed-line services for HK$14.5b

Billionaire Li Ka-shing, chairman of CK Hutchison Holdings Ltd and Cheung Kong Property Holdings Ltd speaks during a news conference in Hong Kong, March 22, 2017. [Photo/VCG]

Billionaire Li Ka-Shing, Asia's best-known dealmaker, will sell fixed-line services of his Hong Kong-listed Hutchison Telecommunications (HTHKH) for about HK$14.5 billion ($1.86 billion), while more assets are added to his portfolio in Europe.

The network operator announced on Sunday that it has signed an agreement to sell the entire shareholding interest in its subsidiary Hutchison Global Communications (HGC), which provides a comprehensive range of fixed-line telecommunications services in Hong Kong and beyond.

Asia Cube Global Communications Ltd, a company wholly-owned by I Squared Capital, an infrastructure-focused private equity firm in the US, will be the buyer among competitors including a consortium consisting of TPG Capital and South Korean billionaire Michael Kim's MBK Partners, the Financial Times reported.

The transaction, still pending for shareholders' approval at the general meeting, is expected to be finished around October this year. CK Hutchison controlled by Li, with a 66.09 percent stake in HTHKH agreed to vote in favor of the deal, according to a regulatory filing to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.

HTHKH Chairman Canning Fok said: "The transaction represents an excellent opportunity to crystallize value for the company and its shareholders." The company's 2017 interim results show that HGC's earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization rose 2 percent year-on-year to HK$682 million in the first six months of the year.

He added that the company will utilize the proceeds to continue growing its mobile business.

The sale comes as Li's holding companies led by CK Infrastructure - part of CK Hutchison- formed a joint venture last Thursday to acquire German metering and energy management group Ista in a deal worth up to $5.25 billion.

Tan Xinyu contributed to this story.

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