One Equity continues pursuit of liquidated Nortel assets

JPMorgan’s private equity arm has teamed with Turkish investment trust, Rhea Girisim, to acquire a 53.13 percent majority ownership of Netas.

US-based One Equity Partners will join forces with Turkey-based investment trust, Rhea Girisim, in purchasing a majority stake in Turkish telecommunications equipment provider, Netas. The consortium will reportedly pay $83.7 million to Nortel Networks International Finance, Netas’ previous owner.

Nortel Networks International Finance is a subsidiary of Canada-based Nortel Networks, a company which filed for bankruptcy last January and is in the process of liquidating all assets.

In May, One Equity also helped finance the acquisition of Nortel’s Carrier VoIP and Application Solutions Business (CVAS) for $182 million through its portfolio company, GENBAND, a supplier of telecommunications equipment.

Telecommunications: finding connection
with private equity in Turkey

One Equity, which is the in-house private equity arm of investment bank JPMorgan, will acquire 53.13 percent of Netas’ shares alongside Rhea Girisim, which is the listed private equity fund of Istanbul-based Rhea Asset Management.

Other stakeholders in Netas include the Turkish Armed Forces Foundation with 15 percent of shares, with the remaining balance of 31.87 percent of shares held by retail investors via Istanbul’s stock exchange.

Founded in 1967, Netas deploys “complex telecommunications infrastructure and integrated networks for marquee service providers, enterprises and to Turkish Armed Forces to deliver voice, data and multimedia services”, according to a statement.

Netas captured revenues of TL102 million (€52 million; $72 million) and earnings after tax of TL4.7 million in the first half of 2010, the statement noted.

The transaction is expected to be completed upon the approval of Turkish competition regulators.