Issue: Yellow Pages
Shed as Telecoms Seek to Diminish Debts
leading telecommunications company, Telenor, is shopping its Yellow Pages
publishing group, Telenor Media, to potential cash buyers. Telenor Media's
suitors include Eniro AB (Sweden's leading directory publisher) and U.S.
private equity firm Texas Pacific Group. The sale price is expected to
top $700 million, which would be just under four times 2000 revenue, or
about 17 times EBITDA.
Telenor is selling
its Yellow Pages group not as a desperation move but to raise cash to
bring its debt load down to manageable levels. Other debt-burdened telecoms
could make similar moves in the near term. One such example is the Dutch
telecom KPN NV, which is heavily burdened with debt and may sell off multiple
assets, including its Yellow Pages division.