Germany's largest cable TV group planning IPO

BERLIN — Kabel Deutschland, Germany’s largest cable TV group, is planning an initial public offering on March 22.

The company, which operates in 13 of Germany’s 16 federal states and has more than 9 million subscribers, said it aims to raise ?700 million ($1 billion) in what would be the largest flotation in Germany in more than two years.

“Providence will keep a majority stake,” said a source with knowledge of the IPO about main shareholder Providence Equity Partners, which holds an 88% stake.

Kabel’s existing shareholders are expected to offer between 20% and 30% of the company’s shares, which would give it an equity value of between $2.7 billion and $4 billion. The bookbuilding period is set for today through March 19 and KDG will offer 45 million shares.

Kabel, which provides TV, telephone and Internet services, expects revenues for its 2009-10 fiscal year ending March 31 to be about $1.35 billion and have an operating profit of about $883 million.

The Kabel group, founded in 1999 when Deutsche Telekom spun off its cable TV businesses, has been investing heavily in new services and products in recent years to advance digital broadband cable services across Germany, including digital channels and high-speed Internet access.

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