Reports have surfaced in the Irish press that the country’s formerly state-owned telecoms operator Eircom is considering its third stock market listing since it was first floated in Dublin, London and New York in 1999. The board of Eircom confirmed the plan in a statement published at the end of last week, suggesting that a number of options are under consideration towards ‘further strengthening the financial position of the Group’. In recent months the telco has made some alterations to its loan arrangement facilities, extending certain repayment terms from 2017 to 2019 in the process. According to the company’s statement, ‘improving the Group’s debt maturity profile has been a key milestone in securing a more sustainable and flexible capital structure for Eircom’. It is understood that the timing of any flotation is yet to be decided, with an unnamed spokesman quoted by some sources as saying that ‘nothing is ruled in or out, this is one of a number of options.’
Eircom was delisted two years after the initial public offering (IPO), following its takeover by Tony O’Reilly-led Valentia consortium. It was floated for a second time in 2004, but de-listed again in 2006. It is estimated to have debts of around EUR2.2 billion (USD3.0 billion) and a stock market listing is seen as a way of generating capital to fund its much needed network upgrade programme.