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Cable & Wireless selling Bermuda business
Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC) is selling its operations in Bermuda to a family-run Canadian cable and telecommunications company in a US$70 million deal. Once the sale to The Braggs Group gets government and regulatory approvals, it’s expected to be finalised by the end of next month, at which time the new owners say they’ll keep the same employees and local management.
“In fact, we expect to increase local Bermudian employment in the near future,” it said in a statement yesterday. News of the sale comes two weeks after CWC reported that its Caribbean operations continue to suffer, at the same that it announced it had signed the final agreement to acquire majority control of Bahamas Telecommunications Company Ltd (BTC). CWC Chief Executive Officer Tony Rice said the Bermuda divestment is consistent with his company’s strategy to reshape its portfolio and develop the business around full-service telecommunications operations in a series of core regional hubs.
“Bermuda does not fit our business model as it is not a full-service operation while BTC provides excellent opportunities and a strong strategic fit with our Caribbean business,” he said in the statement announcing the divestment to The Bragg Group. “The US$70 million consideration represents an excellent return on our long-term investment in Bermuda.” Rice said the developments in Bermuda and the Bahamas together represent the first steps in reshaping the CWC group as outlined at the time of the demerger last year.
Cable & Wireless Bermuda, which is part of CWC’s Monaco & Islands unit, is an international gateway business providing data capacity, carrier, internet and International Direct Dialling calling services. It also provides data centre and disaster recovery services to the corporate community, and partially owns alternative local network provider Quantum Communications Ltd.
CWC also owns stakes in two international cable systems which land in Bermuda that are operated separately and not part of the transaction. The Braggs Group’s purchase of the Bermuda business marks the first time the Nova Scotia-based company has expanded its telecom business beyond Canada, according to reports in Canadian media.
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