PCCW announced in May 2008 that it will consolidate its quad-play offering, including fixed line, broadband, internet, TV and mobile, under a new firm called HKT Group Holdings Ltd and seek investors for the acquisition of up to 45% of the new company. PCCW grouped together its fixed line phone business, which holds a near monopoly position in Hong Kong, one of the territory’s six mobile phone carriers and NOW TV. Now is a pioneering IPTV broadcaster which has now overtaken its cable rival iCable as the biggest pay-TV provider in the territory. It is two years since the last attempt by Richard Li to sell off the company’s assets was blocked by China Netcom. There were strong objections of a proposed sale to overseas investors, due to security concerns about core telecom and media assets falling into foreign hands. The twist this time is that a stake of less than 50% is on sale, not the 100% as in two years ago, and PCCW keeps the controlling stake. This report covers details on the private equity investment in PCCW, related trends in Europe and the anticipated pay-off for investors.
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