Boston Ventures in telecom deal(3)

Boston Ventures is to buy a local US cable and telecom company, marking the middle market firm’s fifth investment from its seventh, $500 million fund.

Media- and communications-focussed Boston Ventures is to acquire SJI, a small, US cable and telecommunications company that has been family-owned since 1945.

“It’s a very strong brand, and a very strong, local, community-focussed company,” said Marco Ferrari, an associate at Boston Ventures who worked on the deal.

In addition to being the incumbent cable and phone company for a portion of southern Louisiana, the company was an attractive target because it has a state-of-the-art network, Ferrari said.

Financial terms of the transaction weren’t disclosed, but the investment is being made from the private equity firm’s seventh fund, which is soon expected to hold a final close on $500 million and whose mandate is to invest between $15 million and $50 million in equity per portfolio company. The fund’s portfolio will have approximately 12 to 15 companies once fully invested.

The 24-year old firm has recently had several exits.

Earlier this month, sources told that Boston Ventures sold a minority stake in Production Resources Group, an entertainment technology company, to private equity firm Jordan Co. for $630 million, after having invested $65 million in the company in 1999.

Also this month, portfolio company Integra Telecom inked a $245 million deal with Warburg Pincus, while Rural Cellular – in which Boston Ventures, Madison Dearborn Partners, and Toronto Dominion Investments invested $100 million in 2000 – agreed in July to be sold to Verizon Wireless for $2.67 billion in cash and assumed debt.