ECI sold to Shaul Shani and Ashmore for $1.2bn

Nasdaq-listed ECI Telecom has been sold to Ashmore Investment Management and telecoms investor Shaul Shani, continuing a strong week for buyout firms in the telecoms sector.

ECI Telecom, an Israeli-based network equipment company listed on Nasdaq, has been acquired by businessman Shaul Shani and emerging markets investor Ashmore Investment Management for around $1.2 billion (€882 million).

The company will be merged with Swarth Group, a portfolio company owned by Ashmore and Shaul Shani.

ECI shareholders will receive $10 per share in cash at closing, which is a premium of approximately 22 percent over the company’s undisturbed share price before any bid was tabled.

ECI’s board approved the sale and the transaction is expected to close at the end of the year, if it receives 75 percent shareholder acceptance and passes antitrust regulation. Koor Industries, Clal Industries & Investments and a group led by Carmel Ventures, which own 44 percent of ECI’s outstanding ordinary shares, have agreed to sell their shares.

ECI may actively solicit alternative proposals from third parties until the end of July. 

It continues a fruitful week for buyout firms in the telecoms sector, coming soon after potentially the largest ever private equity deal – the sale of BCE to a Teachers’ Private Capital, Providence and Madison Dearborn Partners consortium for C$51.7 billion ($48.5 billion, €36 billion) including debt.