Vox Telecom: Trade sale, partner ‘being considered’

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Vox Telecom is preparing an exit for its private equity shareholders amid consolidation among operators in the telecoms sector. Jacques du Toit, the chief executive of the group, said yesterday that the company would explore options including a trade sale or investment from a new partner seeking to expand in Africa. Investec Corporate Finance had been hired to advise on the deal for Johannesburg-based Vox, he said. Shareholders included Rand Merchant Bank and Investec. “Given the current activity in the telecoms landscape, we are using this opportunity to explore several options,” Du Toit said. “The shareholders will sell but it depends on the price.” Vox, bought by a group led by black-owned investment company Lereko Metier for R452 million in 2011, will join a wave of developments in the sector. Vodacom agreed to buy Neotel for R7 billion in May and Telkom is buying Business Connexion for R2.7bn. While Vox had received some expressions of interest from trade buyers, it had not heard from MTN or Vodacom, Du Toit said. The process would close on July 21 and an initial public offering was under consideration. – Bloomberg

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