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Cablecom fixes price band for bourse entry

Cabelcom has fixed its price band for bourse entry

(Keystone)

Cablecom, Switzerland's biggest cable operator, is to offer its shares at SFr57-70 ($44.2-54.3) in a listing that values the company at up to SFr3.5 billion.

The company, which provides television, telephone and broadband services, said it hopes to raise more than SFr2 billion when it goes public on October 13.

The shares of Cablecom - a fast-growing competitor to Switzerland's largest telecoms operator, Swisscom - are to be listed on the SWX stock exchange in Zurich.

The initial public offering (IPO) consists of 35.175 million registered shares that will be sold by existing shareholders, with a greenshoe option of a further 5.276 million shares.

A greenshoe option allows the underwriting of an IPO to sell additional shares to the public if the demand is high.

The company said the free float - the total number of shares that will be publicly owned and available for trading - would be around 70 per cent, and up to 81 per cent if the greenshoe were exercised.

"This IPO demonstrates the emergence of cable as a powerful platform to continue to grow and develop our customer market through television, internet, fixed line and potentially mobile company," said Cablecom CEO Bruno Claude.

Credit Suisse First Boston and Morgan Stanley will act as the joint global coordinators for the IPO.

Speculation over

Speculation about Cablecom's future has been rife for the past three months.

The company, whose first-half turnover rose by 17 per cent to SFr406.2 million, admitted during the summer that it had been considering options and that potential buyers had regularly approached it in recent years.

Rising share prices and confidence in Switzerland's economic prospects have prompted several Swiss companies to go public this year, with more expected to follow.

Last week, Basel-based Panalpina – one of the world's largest air and sea freight companies – listed its shares on the Swiss stock exchange, raising about SFr1 billion.

And the software company Esmertec made its market debut on Thursday after issuing over five million shares at SFr18, raising at least SFr98 million.

swissinfo with agencies

Key facts

Cablecom had sales of SFr406.2 million for the first six months of the year.
The company employs 1,715 people.
1.5 million households subscribe to Cablecom's telephone and telephone services.
The company has 150,000 customers for its phone services just one year after their launch.
Apollo Management, Goldman Sachs Capital Partners and TowerBrook Capital Partners together hold 53 per cent of Cablecom. The rest is owned by banks.

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