Permira sells stake in German telco for €115m

The exit ends the firm’s five year relationship with telecoms platform Debitel.

UK-buyout firm Permira has sold its remaining 10.1 percent stake in freenet, a Germany-based telecommunications provider, for around €115 million.

The transaction sees Permira completely exit its German telecom investments that started in 2004 with the acquisition of Debitel. The entire investment has made Permira about three times its money, a source close to the firm told PEO.

Permira sold 12.9 million shares of freenet for €8.90 per share in a placement arranged by Goldman Sachs and UBS.

Permira’s original deal for the acquisition of Debitel was valued at €640 million. After the first acquisition, the firm built up the telecom platform through add-ons. The firm sold Debitel to freenet in 2008 for €1.63 billion and as part of the deal, Permira received a 24.99 percent stake in freenet, and has been gradually selling off its freenet stake.

Permira is currently investing its €9.6 billion fourth fund. The firm agreed its first equity-only deal in late 2009 for financial services group Just Retirement for £225.5 million (€251 million; $364 million).

The firm’s Fund IV was originally €11.1 billion, but Permira last year allowed investors to cut their commitments by up to 40 percent to help those with over-allocations to the asset class or liquidity problems.