CK Hutchison set to spin-off European tower assets - Mobile World Live

CK Hutchison set to spin-off European tower assets

01 AUG 2019

CK Hutchison announced its telecommunications assets in Hong Kong and Europe had been moved into a newly-formed holding company, with plans in place to move 28,500 towers into a separate subsidiary.

During its H1 financial results update, the company said in July it had formed new business CK Hutchison Group Telecom Holdings. It houses assets from its Hong Kong and Macau communications operation together with European mobile and fixed operations largely operating under the 3 brand. This gives it a reach across eight territories.

The new division plans to refinance the €10 billion of external debt related to Italy operation Wind Tre, which it bought former JV partner Veon out of in 2018, and set up a separate company called CK Hutchison Networks to house its European tower assets.

Its current plan is to manage its 28,500 towers within Europe under the networks business, but noted it has the option to add the 9,300 towers it owns in Asia at a later date.

The creation of the tower company is expected to be completed in late 2019 or early 2020.

In a statement, parent company CK Hutchison said: “The new organisation structure and the refinancing transaction will allow the group to generate significant financing cost savings from 2020 onwards, as well as rationalise its investments in light of the expected need for harmonisation of network, IT platform, and infrastructure configurations to meet new transnational business opportunities going forward.”

Figures
For the six months to the end of June, the company’s various telecommunications divisions booked revenue of HKD46.2 billion ($5.9 billion) with EBIT of HKD10.4 billion. Net figures were not supplied.

Revenue from its European operation increased 20 per cent year-on-year to HKD43.5 billion, with EBIT up 40 per cent to HKD10 billion.

The Hong Kong unit booked a revenue drop of 37 per cent to HKD2.5 billion, on falling margins on handset sales. EBIT was HKD260 million, down 8 per cent year-on-year.

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Chris Donkin

Chris joined the Mobile World Live team in November 2016 having previously worked at a number of UK media outlets including Trinity Mirror, The Press Association and UK telecoms publication Mobile News. After spending 10 years in journalism, he moved...

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