KKR offer prompts Telecom Italia board showdown over CEO's future



* KKR has tabled $12 billion proposal to take TIM private

* Under fire from top investor, CEO offers to give up powers

* Auditors raise fresh concerns over costly soccer deals

By Elvira Pollina

MILAN, Nov 26 (Reuters) - Telecom Italia faces another boardroom showdown after Luigi Gubitosi told them he was ready to quit as chief executive if that helped speed their decision over KKR's takeover proposal.

The board of Telecom Italia (TIM), which meets at 1400 GMT on Friday, will also discuss the impact on earnings of a soccer rights deal that has failed to help revenue and contributed to two profit warnings at Italy's biggest phone group since July.

TIM's TLIT.MI auditors went over the 1 billion euro deal Gubitosi struck with DAZN to stream Italy's top-flight soccer matches on Thursday and two sources close to the matter told Reuters that they had raised fresh concerns.

One of the sources said a further downgrade to TIM's financial outlook may not be ruled out. TIM is weighed down by debts equal to around four times its core profit.

The company's debt rating, already classified as "junk", was cut further last week by ratings agency S&P.

U.S. private equity firm KKR KKR.N rushed to submit its offer after the downgrade, another two people close to the matter said, adding that TIM was in danger of breaching bank covenants.

Gubitosi, who has come under attack by TIM's top investor Vivendi VIV.PA , has offered to relinquish his executive powers without stepping down as a director.

That means that his responsibilities need to be reassigned to another director, or else a board member would need to resign to free up a seat for a new CEO.

In a letter to the board, a copy of which was seen by Reuters, Gubitosi criticised directors for stalling on KKR's offer to please some of the group's shareholders.

STRATEGIC ASSET

The face-off between Gubitosi and Vivendi is the latest boardroom crisis at TIM, which has had three CEOs since 2015, when the French media group began building its 24% stake.

In the letter Gubitosi rejected speculation that he was close to KKR, and urged the board to grant the New York-based fund access to company data and appoint advisers.

TIM's board first examined KKR's 10.8 billion euro ($12 billion) non-binding proposal to take it private on Sunday.

KKR, which valued TIM at 33 billion euros including net debt, has asked for a four-week due diligence analysis.

Gubitosi first brought KKR onboard last year, striking a 1.8 billion euro deal that handed the fund a 37.5% stake in TIM's so-called last-mile network reaching into people's homes.

The takeover offer for the whole of TIM comes as Italy prepares to spend 6.7 billion euros of European Union recovery fund to speed up ultra-fast broadband rollout across the nation.

TIM's fixed network, which the government is keen to see upgraded to fibre, is Italy's main telecoms infrastructure and Rome has said its stance on the KKR proposal will hinge on plans for the network.

Rome has special powers to block moves on strategic companies such as TIM but the executive of Prime Minister Mario Draghi has hailed KKR's interest as good news for Italy.

Sources have said KKR, which consulted the government before tabling its proposal, plans to carve out the network and give state investor CDP - currently TIM's second-biggest shareholder - a leading role in overseeing the asset. ($1 = 0.8874 euros)
Writing by Valentina Za; Editing by Alexander Smith

免責聲明: XM Group提供線上交易平台的登入和執行服務,允許個人查看和/或使用網站所提供的內容,但不進行任何更改或擴展其服務和訪問權限,並受以下條款與條例約束:(i)條款與條例;(ii)風險提示;(iii)完全免責聲明。網站內部所提供的所有資訊,僅限於一般資訊用途。請注意,我們所有的線上交易平台內容並不構成,也不被視為進入金融市場交易的邀約或邀請 。金融市場交易會對您的投資帶來重大風險。

所有缐上交易平台所發佈的資料,僅適用於教育/資訊類用途,不包含也不應被視爲適用於金融、投資稅或交易相關諮詢和建議,或是交易價格紀錄,或是任何金融商品或非應邀途徑的金融相關優惠的交易邀約或邀請。

本網站的所有XM和第三方所提供的内容,包括意見、新聞、研究、分析、價格其他資訊和第三方網站鏈接,皆爲‘按原狀’,並作爲一般市場評論所提供,而非投資建議。請理解和接受,所有被歸類為投資研究範圍的相關内容,並非爲了促進投資研究獨立性,而根據法律要求所編寫,而是被視爲符合營銷傳播相關法律與法規所編寫的内容。請確保您已詳讀並完全理解我們的非獨立投資研究提示和風險提示資訊,相關詳情請點擊 這裡查看。

我們運用 cookies 提供您最佳之網頁使用經驗。更改您的cookie 設定跟詳情。

風險提示: 您的資金存在風險。杠杆商品可能不適合所有客戶。 請詳細閱讀我們的風險聲明