United Group, a KKR- and EBRD-owned company, to acquire media assets
from Central European Media Enterprises (CME)
Investment a major sign of confidence by leading US and European
investors in the economic growth of the region
United Group, the leading multi-play (Pay-TV, Broadband, Telephony,
Mobile) operator in South East Europe, backed by leading US investment
firm KKR and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development
("EBRD"), has agreed to acquire the Croatian and Slovenian media
portfolio owned by CME (NASDAQ: CETV). The transaction is subject to the
relevant regulatory approvals.
The portfolio of assets includes leading TV channels in Slovenia and
Croatia, two economies estimated to post real GDP growth of over 2%
annually between 2016 and 2018.
United Group, will invest in those channels to further build their local
production capabilities and expand their reach beyond their respective
local markets by leveraging its regional and international footprint.
KKR has invested over $8bn in Telecoms, Media and Digital sectors
globally and has particular expertise in supporting businesses grow and
develop in the digital age. Since 1996, KKR has invested in 58 companies
across sectors in Europe, representing over $20 billion in invested
long-term capital, as of 31st March 2017.
Jean-Pierre Saad, Director at KKR, said: "KKR has a strong track record
of supporting media and telecom businesses to grow further in the
current digital ecosystem. By investing in high quality local and
international content, we will support the United Group teams to
continue to offer differentiated and attractive content to all its
customers across the region. KKR, EBRD and United Group will work
closely with all relevant authorities to ensure a smooth transition, in
line with European standards."
Dirk Werner, Director Information and Communication Technologies at the
EBRD, said: "Today's announcement represents a strong a vote of
confidence in the Croatian and Slovenian economies by a leading
international investor and will offer consumers direct access to high
quality local and international digital content."
KKR made its investment in United Group primarily through its third
About the EBRD
The EBRD is a multilateral bank committed to the development of
market-oriented economies and the promotion of private and
entrepreneurial initiative in more than 30 countries from Morocco to
Mongolia and from Estonia to Egypt. The Bank is owned by 65 countries,
as well as the European Union and the European Investment Bank. In the
countries where it invests, it aims to make economies more competitive,
inclusive, well-governed, green, resilient and integrated. It is the
largest institutional investor in many of the countries where it is
active and since its creation in 1991 has invested more than €115
billion in over 4,500 projects.
KKR is a leading global investment firm that manages investments across
multiple asset classes including private equity, energy, infrastructure,
real estate, credit and hedge funds. KKR aims to generate attractive
investment returns by following a patient and disciplined investment
approach, employing world‐class people, and driving growth and value
creation at the asset level. KKR invests its own capital alongside its
partners' capital and brings opportunities to others through its capital
markets business. References to KKR's investments may include the
activities of its sponsored funds. For additional information about KKR
& Co. L.P. (NYSE:KKR), please visit KKR's website at www.kkr.com and
on Twitter @KKR_Co.
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