CORRECTED-UPDATE 2-Telecoms group Altice set to buy Oi's Portugal operations

lunes 1 de diciembre de 2014 06:37 GYT

(Fixes currency in second paragraph to dollars from euros)

By Leila Abboud and Guillermo Parra-Bernal

PARIS/SAO PAULO Dec 1 (Reuters) - Telecoms group Altice SA has agreed to buy the Portuguese operations of Brazil's Grupo Oi for about 7.4 billion euros ($9.2 billion), in what will be its third large acquisition this year.

Franco-Israeli billionaire entrepreneur Patrick Drahi, who founded Altice, has been on an expansion drive with deals worth some $30 billion this year alone, and is on track to add Portugal to his portfolio of cable and mobile companies in France, Israel, and the Dominican Republic.

For Oi, Brazil's largest fixed-line telephone provider, the divestment marks the effective unwinding of its ill-fated merger with Portugal Telecom, which hit the rocks earlier this year when the Portuguese side lost hundreds of millions of euros in the country's Espirito Santo banking scandal.

Shares in Altice jumped more than 5 percent to 56.87 euros in morning trade as investors cheered the acquisition even though Altice had to slightly raise its offer to see off a competing bid from private equity funds Apax and Bain.

ING analyst Emmanuel Carlier estimated that the Portugal deal would add about 9 euros per share to Altice's valuation.

"Altice announces that it has entered into an exclusivity agreement with Oi to agree the purchase of the Portuguese assets of Portugal Telecom," the company said in a statement.

Altice was advised by Morgan Stanley and Perella Weinberg on the deal. Oi was advised by BTG Pactual.   Continuación...