Summary:

The world’s largest broadband provider outside China is about to get a bit bigger, as it is buying out what it doesn’t already own of Dutch cableco Ziggo. Newly-installed Ziggo CEO Rene Obermann will leave if the transaction goes through.

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Confirming recent reports, John Malone’s Liberty Global broadband outfit – the world’s largest outside China — said on Monday that it will buy what it doesn’t already own of Dutch cable provider Ziggo.

Ziggo’s other shareholders (Liberty already owns around 28.5 percent) will get €11 ($15) per share, along with some Liberty shares. This implies a price per Ziggo share of €34.53, taking the provider’s total valuation to €6.9 billion ($9.4 billion). Ziggo’s supervisory and management boards have unanimously recommended the deal.

Ziggo is the biggest cable company in the Netherlands and Liberty’s UPC is the second-biggest, though the two are not direct competitors due to a split in regional coverage. The combined operations, which will continue under the Ziggo brand, will reach 7 million Dutch homes, or 90 percent of the market.

The deal will also give Liberty a mobile play in the country, which it previously lacked – the current wave of European telco consolidations is largely about creating providers that can offer a full package of communication technologies.

However, Ziggo CEO Rene Obermann – who left the helm of the much larger Deutsche Telekom less than a month ago — is out the door. “If and when the transaction closes, it is not Mr. Obermann’s intention to be part of the new combination,” a Ziggo statement read.

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