Stockholm - Tele2 AB, ("Tele2"), (Stockholmsbörsen: TEL2A and TEL2B), the leading alternative pan-European telecommunications company, today announces that it has sold its fixed telephony operations Tele2 UK Communications Ltd in the UK and Tele2 Telecommunications Services Ltd in Ireland to The Carphone Warehouse Group plc ("Carphone Warehouse").
Tele2 has marketed fixed telephony in the UK since the end of 2003, and in Ireland since September 2004. As with every new country launch, Tele2's aim in the UK and Ireland was to become one of the leading alternative operators by offering cheap and simple telecom services. The next step for these businesses would be to add to their product portfolio by offering broadband services. However, the alternatives for offering broadband services in the UK today do not meet Tele2s long-term profitability requirements. This has led to a decision by Tele2 to divest the aforementioned operations in the UK and in Ireland, and to instead focus on other markets. Tele2 will continue operating Alpha Telecom, 3C and C³ in the UK.
Carphone Warehouse acquires Tele2's assets in the UK and Ireland for a consideration of MGBP 8.7 on a debt-free basis. The number of customers that Carphone Warehouse takes on is 223,000. For the first nine months of 2005, these operations had revenue of approximately MEUR 52 and an EBITDA of approximately MEUR -19.
Lars-Johan Jarnheimer, CEO and President of Tele2 commented, "The decision to divest our UK and Ireland operations has not been taken lightly and is a result of thorough analysis of the market and our various options. The way the market for alternative operators in the UK and in Ireland looks today, we can get significantly better returns by reallocating its budget to other markets."
Lars-Johan Jarnheimer, Telephone: + 46 8 562 640 00
President and CEO, Tele2 AB
Håkan Zadler, Telephone: + 46 8 562 640 00
CFO, Tele2 AB
Dwayne Taylor, Telephone: + 44 20 7321 5038
Lena Krauss, Telephone: + 46 8 562 000 45
Visit us at our homepage: http://www.Tele2.com
Tele2 is Europe's leading alternative telecom operator. Tele2 always strives to offer the market's best prices. With our unique values, we provide cheap and simple telecom for all Europeans every day. We have more than 30 million customers in 25 countries. We offer products and services in fixed and mobile telephony, Internet access, data networks, cable TV and content services. Our main competitors are the former government monopolies. Tele2 was founded in 1993 by Jan Stenbeck and has been listed on Stockholmsbörsen since 1996. In 2004 we had operating revenue of SEK 43 billion and reported a profit (EBITDA) of SEK 6.6 billion.