Liberty Puerto Rico gets the green light to buy OneLink
Iñaki Ferreras | 06-11-2012
Puerto Rico’s Telecommunications Regulatory Board (JRT) has authorized the purchase by Liberty Puerto Rico of cable TV, Internet and telephony provider OneLink Communications.
An agreement was signed last June by Liberty Global and the multinational investment group of MidOcean Partners and Crestview Partners, which control OneLink, involving a figure close to $585 million.
At that time, Mauricio Ramos, president of Liberty Global Latin America, said: “This transaction makes us the leading provider of cable services in Puerto Rico, to about 70% of cable households on the island, and substantially increases our existing operations here.”
With the merger of OneLink, Liberty will become Liberty Cablevision Puerto Rico, and double its operations, as the 37 municipalities in the region east and north where it already provides cable TV services, Internet and telephony, will be joined by the eight municipalities of the metropolitan region in which it operates OneLink. This will give “approximately 700,000 homes and 480,000 subscribers reach, generating nearly $ 300 million in pro forma 2011 revenues,”said Ramos.
After approval was given by JRT, which was proceeded by a favorable decision by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), Naji Khoury, CEO of Liberty Cablevision, told El Nuevo Dia newspaper that the transaction was “very good news for subscribers to OneLink”.
Khoury confirmed that the merger will be accompanied with an investment plan to develop infrastructure there and improve the services provided in their respective regions. “Our goal is to replicate in OneLink everything we've done with Liberty”, he said.
Among these investments, Liberty plans to update its network under DOCSIS 3.0, and deploy fiber to homes in the region to allow existing OneLink customers access to Internet bundled services up to 30Mbps download and 2Mbps upload, with 352 pay TV channels, including 75 HD channels, a better balance of programmes in both English and Spanish, and digital telephony.