Partner (Orange) is up for sale

Partner

Partner

For many months the industry vibes were implying that Hutchison is about to sell its stake in Partner IL. Vibes that weren’t confirmed until very recently.

Ha’aretznewspaper says that Hutchison Whampoa who owns 51% stake in Partner Communications (PTNR), has informed Ilan Ben-Dov on thursday that his offer to buy its controlling interest in Partner Communications has reached the next stage. He was the first potential buyer to receive such notice.

Other contenders for Hutchison’s stake include Shaul Elovitch’s company Eurocom, Ishay Davidi’s private equity fund FIMI, and Leumi Partners, which put together a group hat includes the Migdal insurance company, Mivtachim, and former banker Shlomo Nehama. The first stage, which Ben-Dov has passed, involved proposing a non-binding offer. The second stage will grant them access to Partner’s confidential information, after which they’ll have to make a binding offer.

According to Reuters, Standard & Poor’s Maalot said on Tuesday it moved Partner Communications (PTNR.TA) (PTNR.O) to CreditWatch “developing” from “positive”, after Hutchison Telecommunications International (2332.HK) said it might sell its stake in the mobile operator. “A possible change in Partner’s ownership structure could have an impact on the company’s financial structure and as a result also on its financial risk profile,” the Israeli S&P unit said in a statement to the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange.

Meanwhile, Orange has won Israel’s leading communications brand (and second of  all brand after Coca-Cola) for the seventh consecutive year, followed by Cellcom.

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