TDC, a Nordic operator headquartered in Denmark, agreed a NOK13.8 billion ($2.2 billion) deal to buy Get, a cable-TV provider in Norway, in a bid to spur growth in the face of increasing competitive and regulatory pressures on its traditional fixed and mobile businesses.
Unlike Vodafone, which recently bought Spanish cable operator Ono – as well as Kabel Deutschland last year – TDC’s deeper foray into cable does not appear motivated by developing quad-play services. TDC’s mobile presence in Norway is confined to a small MVNO operation.
“The acquisition of Get is TDC Group’s most significant investment in many years,” said Carsten Dilling (pictured), TDC’s chief executive. “We have awaited this opportunity and see it as a natural and timely extension of our business and it marks an evolution of TDC Group into a leading Scandinavian provider of TV, home entertainment and high speed broadband on the cable platform.”
Dilling said TDC would be able to draw on experience from running its YouSee cable business in Denmark to get the most out of its Get purchase. TDC, through YouSee, offers quadplay (fixed and mobile telephony, broadband and TV).
By purchasing Get, TDC Group’s cable business will increase to 1.7 million connected households, up from 1.2 million (YouSee).
A total of 29 per cent of TDC Group’s revenue (based on 2013 figures) will now come from cable, a share which the operator expects to grow.
To pay for the acquisition, TDC says it will use debt financing. The dividend will also be cut. The acquisition is subject to anti-trust approval from Norwegian competition authorities, which TDC thinks will happen during Q4 2014.