Private equity shareholders of South African broadband provider Vox Telecom are reportedly mulling an exit from the telecoms market, Bloomberg reports. Chief executive officer Jacques du Toit said that the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE)-listed company will explore different options including a trade sale or investment from a new partner seeking to expand in Africa; the executive, however, disclosed that an initial public offering (IPO) is currently not on the table. ‘Given the current activity in the telecoms landscape, we are using this opportunity to explore several options … The shareholders will sell but it depends on the price’, du Toit said. Further, the executive revealed that Investec Corporate Finance has been hired to advise Vox Telecom on the deal. While Vox had reportedly received some expressions of interest from trade buyers, none of the larger domestic operators have shown interest in acquiring the broadband provider.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, in July 2011 Vox Telecom received a firm offer from existing shareholder Lereko Metier Capital Growth Fund and new partner Investec Bank (IBL) to acquire 100% of the company’s shares. Vox shareholders were given the opportunity to relinquish their respective investments via an offer of ZAR0.45 (USD0.06) per Vox share, or maintain their investment and receive one BidCo share for every ten Vox shares, or opt to take up a combination of both options. By early October 2011 Lereko Metier had succeeded in acquiring 42.45% of Vox Telecom’s shares, while IBL had captured 17.61%.