A preliminary agreement worth €503 million has been signed following a verbal agreement reached on May 11 that will see VOO (the joint venture between Brutele and ALE-Teledis) acquire the eight other Walloon operators from their current owners, municipalities and Belgian utility Electrabel.
According to local sources, the deal involves the €475 million pricetag agreed upon in March, plus the assumption of €38 million of debt.
The deal stalled last month over disagreement as to who should carry the risk of any claims from the Flemish MSO Telenet, which was excluded from the bidding last autumn.
VOO is now reported to be approaching Telenet regarding opportunities for future collaboration, though Telenet says it is continuing to prepare its case against any sale.
With over 1,237,000 subscribers, the new group will cover almost all Walloon cable homes. VOO itself was formed by merger between ALE (312,367 subscribers) and Brutélé (291,109 subscribers), while the eight networks being acquired serve approximately 634,000 households in 180 out of 262 municipalities in Wallonia.
Approval of the final agreement will be sought at the operators’ general meetings in September.