News, Culture & Society

Vodafone eyes £1.5bn sale of its Hungarian arm to local company 4iG

Vodafone eyes £1.5bn sale of its Hungarian arm to local company 4iG

  • The deal would see Hungarian firm 4iG take over Vodafone Hungary
  • 4iG will pay 715bn Hungarian forints (£1.5bn), 9.1 times its so-called ebitdaal 
  • After the deal, 4iG will be the second biggest mobile and fixed communications company in Hungary 

Vodafone plans to sell its Hungarian arm to a local company for £1.5bn. 

The telecommunications giant said it had ‘entered into heads of terms’ – similar to a letter of intent – for the deal, which would see Hungarian firm 4iG take over Vodafone Hungary. 

4iG will pay 715bn Hungarian forints (£1.5bn), 9.1 times its so-called ebitdaal (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation, after leases) for the last financial year. 

Vodafone plans to sell its Hungarian arm to a local company for £1.5bn

Bosses said the deal fits well with the hopes of the Hungarian government to create a large locally owned telecommunications giant. After the deal, 4iG will be the second biggest mobile and fixed communications company in Hungary. 

Vodafone chief executive Nick Read said: ‘The Hungarian government has a clear strategy to build a Hungarian-owned national champion in the ICT (information and communications technology) sector. 

‘This combination with 4iG will allow Vodafone Hungary, which has a proud history of success and innovation in the country, to play a major role in the future growth and development of the sector as a much stronger scaled and fully con- verged operator. 

‘The combined entity will increase competition and have greater access to investment to further the digitalisation of Hungary.’ 

Victoria Scholar, head of investment at Interactive Investor, said: ‘It is clear the Hungary government is keen to build its own national telecoms champion with Vodafone prepared to take the cash in exchange for the spin-off. 

‘In November last year Nick Read said he was pursuing consolidation in Europe. 

‘Now the telecoms giant can focus more of its attention on Germany instead, a market it considers to be the most attractive on the continent.’

There is also M&A (mergers and acquisitions) potential for Vodafone in the UK amid recent reports that it considered a merger with Three’s UK division. Vodafone’s share price has been in long-term decline, halving since the peak in January 2018. 

***
Read more at DailyMail.co.uk