Liberty Global reopens talks to acquire cable provider Ziggo

12 December 2013 | Sophie Donoghue


US-based cable group Liberty Global has revived talks to acquire Dutch cable company Ziggo.

Liberty is already Ziggo’s largest shareholder, and holds a 28.5% stake in the European cable group. A full acquisition would increase the company’s presence in both the Netherlands and Belgium.

Liberty – which also owns the Dutch cable business UPC – will reportedly mount the takeover bid before the end of this year.

It is the latest bid by the John Malone-owned Liberty Global to consolidate Europe’s cable market, after it bought out a range of European cable companies, including UK cable group Virgin Media and Germany’s second-largest cable operator, Unitymedia.

Ziggo rejected a takeover bid from the company in October, claiming it was too low. The company stated that there is no certainty that any agreement can be reached or that any offer will ultimately be made.

Ziggo provides cable television services in the Netherlands, with approximately 2.8m subscribers.

Liberty has a reputation for resisting pressure to pay for companies it deems to be overvalued. In January 2013, it halted a bid for full control of Telenet and also abandoned its interests in Kabel Deutschland earlier this year, after Vodafone increased its bid to €7.7 billion.