Pay TV operator to raise nearly $600 million in share increase

BERLIN

Rupert Murdoch’s Sky Deutschland is set to raise €438 million ($585.8 million) through a share increase and private placement as part of a deal that allows News Corp. to take a majority stake in the German pay TV operator.

Sky Deutschland is raising $464.7 million through a private placement by selling 77.9 million new shares to News Adelaide, a new subsidiary of New York-based News Corp. Latter will see its stake in the platform increase from 49.9% to 54.5%.

Sky Deutschland will reach the remaining targeted equity of $121.1 million by offering new shares to existing shareholders.

In addition, the feevee operator is securing five-year bank loans of $401 million guaranteed by News Corp. to pay back current bank debt.

The new financing structure includes extra funding of some $235 million to enhance Sky Deutschland’s financial flexibility and enable continued investment in exclusive content, innovations and customer service, the company said.

News Corp. has agreed to guarantee Sky Deutschland’s acquisition of German Football League broadcasting rights from 2013 to 2017. German soccer is the satcaaster’s biggest asset and its most important lure in attracting subscribers.

Sky Deutschland’s share price jumped 4.9% on Monday to $6.46 on the news of the financing deal before settling at $6.32.

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