DNA, Finland’s third-largest mobile operator, is contemplating either a sale or an IPO this year, according to a Bloomberg report.
Owned by a group of Finnish regional mobile operators led by Finda, talks have begun with UBS bank about either selling a stake to an outside investor or listing on the Helsinki stock market before the end of this year.
An IPO, say Bloomberg sources, could raise as much as €500 million.
“I would expect DNA to IPO about half of its shares to the wider public and to institutional investors,” Mikko Ervasti, an analyst at Evli Bank in Helsinki, told Bloomberg. “There should be relatively broad appeal.” He adds that DNA’s market value is probably worth around €1.1 billion.
Extra cash would benefit shareholders but also provide more funds to compete against bigger rivals Elisa and TeliaSonera.
“We are evaluating our options and are preparing the company for an IPO as we have done for years,” said Irene Kantor, a spokeswoman for DNA, quoted in the report.
DNA’s full-year 2012 sales increased 5.7 per cent to €769 million, while underlying cash profits rose 1.2 per cent to €191 million. Operating profit rose 10.4 per cent, to €56.1 million.
According to figures from Wireless Intelligence, DNA had 2.4 million subscribers as of 31 March 2013, behind Elisa (3.9 million) and TeliaSonera (3.3 million).
DNA also owns a cable TV network in the Helsinki area.