Private equity firm acquires Gas Natural Fenosa Telecomunicaciones

UK-based private equity firm Cinven Partners has agreed to acquire the fibre network of Spanish utility company Gas Natural Fenosa for €510 million.

The deal for Gas Natural Fenosa Telecomunicaciones will give Cinven ownership of 30,000km of network across Spain, Central America, Panama and Colombia.

The company offers a range of dark fibre, optical transport, co-location, satellite and IP services.

“GNFT is a well-invested fibre business in Spain with strong cash flow generation. The company also has exposure to high-growth markets in Central and South America. GNFT has an excellent management team with a significant track record in the telecoms industry with a combined 86 years in the sector and we look forward to working with them,” said Jorge Quemada, partner, Cinven.

GNFT is said to have recorded a 13% EBITDA increase CAGR between 2011 and 2013.

With the majority of GNFT’s assets located in Central America, where Gas Natural’s electricity arm has deployed fibre networks alongside power cables, the acquisition will provide access to high-growth markets in the region.

Cinven said GNFT’s operations in Spain have generated a stable and strong cash flow, with the move also bringing much-needed private equity investment to the Spanish market, where activity has been slow since the financial crisis.

"Our TMT and Spanish teams have worked closely together to identify the investment opportunity in GNFT. We have invested successfully in telecom businesses such as Ziggo in the Netherlands and Numericable in France in the past and believe this will considerably benefit the growth of GNFT,” added Quemada.

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