Innova Capital exits Orange Slovakia

The Central and Eastern Europe focused firm has fully divested its stake in the Slovakian mobile operator.

Warsaw-based private equity firm Innova Capital has sold its stake in mobile communications operator Orange Slovakia to France Telecom.

The publicly listed French telecommunications firm signed an agreement with a minority shareholders consortium, including two funds managed by Innova Capital, to acquire just over 36 percent of Orange Slovakia in a deal valued at €628 million ($757 million).

The consortium comprised: Innova/98; Innova/3; AIG New Europe Fund; Emerging Europe Infrastructure Fund; Polish Enterprise Fund IV; Communications Venture Partners; Part-com FCPR; Metropolitan Life Insurance Company; and European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

In 2001, the consortium purchased a 36 percent stake in Slovakian government-owned company Globtel, before renaming it Orange Slovakia.

Innova Capital was also part of a consortium that sold its stake in Orange Romania fto France Telecom for a total cash consideration of $523 million (€433 million) in April of this year.

Orange Slovakia is the largest mobile operator in Slovakia, with a 57 percent share of the market and €420 million in revenue, said Innova Capital.

In separate news, Innova Capital has also sold approximately 11 percent of all shares in Polcard, a Polish debit and credit card merchant transaction acquirer and processor, to GTECH Corporation for an undisclosed sum. Following the transaction, Innova Capital funds own just over 25 percent of Polcard shares.