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Mid Europa Partners acquires SBB, the leading Serbian cable television, Internet and satellite TV player
27 Jun 2007
Mid Europa Partners announced today that it has completed the acquisition of a substantial controlling stake in Serbia Broadband (“SBB”) from SEEF I, managed by Bedminster Capital Management. SEEF II, also managed by Bedminster, is investing alongside Mid Europa. SBB is the leading cable TV and broadband internet player in Serbia and a rapidly growing provider of satellite TV (DTH) services on the territory of the former Yugoslavia. SBB has close to half a million subscribers across its three service platforms.
SBB is one of the fastest growing cable TV companies in Central and Eastern Europe, generating an annual revenue growth rate of over 60% over the past two years. SBB has a leading cable TV and Internet position in the Serbian capital Belgrade and a very strong presence across the country. SBB's DTH platform, Total TV, is rapidly expanding in Serbia, as well as in the neighboring countries of the former Yugoslavia, on the back of its strong local content.
Robert Knorr, who led the transaction for Mid Europa, said: "We are delighted to have acquired such a high growth and market leading asset. This ground breaking deal, which was executed by Michelle Capiod and Andrej Babace, represents the first leveraged buy-out in Serbia and demonstrates our ability to implement complex transactions in new markets. Mid Europa is intimately familiar with the markets of the former Yugoslavia, having previously invested in Slovenia and Croatia. We plan to leverage on our track record and established relationships in the cable TV sector and look forward to supporting SBB's strong management team through significant capital investment and know-how."
Dragan Solak, CEO of SBB, said: "Under the ownership of SEEF I, SBB became the leading operator in the Serbian cable TV market, having been the first to introduce high quality video content and broadband Internet. The management is delighted to welcome Mid Europa, who with their experience in the sector and their ambition to grow the business will be excellent partners for us going forward."
Unicredit Markets and Investment Banking, acting through Bank Austria Creditanstalt, Vienna, acted as Sole Underwriter and Mandated Lead Arranger of the financing package. Mid Europa was advised by Berwin Leighton Paisner, Kirkland & Ellis, Karanovic & Nikolic, Hardiman Telecom and PWC.