BT to sell £100m of Dutch infrastructure

BT to sell £100m of Dutch infrastructure

19 August 2019 | Natalie Bannerman

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BT Group’s CEO Philip Jansen (pictured) plans to sell more than £100 million in telecoms infrastructure in Holland, as he attempts to simplify the company.

According to The Times, Jansen wants to offload towers and broadband cables that currently connect BT’s Global Services Dutch business customers. The news comes as the company’s Global Services division reported a 5% decline in revenue in the first quarter, owing to divestments and its strategy to reduce business with low margins.

As part of Jansen’s wider plan for the group, he has been selling off a number of BT’s fringe units and focusing BT on deploying full-fibre broadband across the country. Although he confirmed to The Times that the company was not “pulling out of specific countries altogether”.

Earlier this month, the company announced plans to sell Tikit, its legal software business in a deal worth £80 million. This was after it agreed to sell off its fleet management business AURELIUS Equity Opportunities, for an undisclosed amount. Prior to this, in July Jansen confirmed that the company had sold its London headquarters in St Pauls to real estate fund Orion Capital Managers for £209.6 million.

Additionally, BT has said that it intends on delisting itself from the New York Stock Exchange and deregister with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which will help to reduce costs and simplify its reporting process.

BT has seen its share of troubles as of late. Its share price drop more than 30% since the start of the year and just this month a US law firm said that it is to file a new class-action complaint against BT naming past senior directors in the scandal at BT Italia, which caused the group to write off £530 million.

Law firm Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd has already filed three versions of the complaint, which name BT Group as a defendant plus two previous CEOs, Ian Livingston and Gavin Patterson, previous CFO Tony Chanmugam, as well as former BT Global Services CEO Luis Alvarez, and Nick Rose, who chaired the group’s audit and risk committee.