ComCom (Swiss Federal Communications Commission) said on Thursday that it would allow Apax Partners to sell Orange Switzerland to Xavier Niel's personal holding company. " This takeover does not affect the conditions for granting the concession or competition on the mobile telephone market. "
In December 2014, we learned that Xavier Niel had acquired 2.3 billion euros from Orange Switzerland. This operator had been sold in February 2012 by Orange to the Apax investment fund for 1.6 billion euros.
—–News published on December 18, 2014Through his personal holding company NJJ Capital, and therefore without the involvement of the parent company of Free, Xavier Niel had already set foot in the Principality of Monaco by buying 55% of the capital of Monaco Telecom (322 million euros). This time, it is in Switzerland that the French telecoms tycoon sets foot.
Always via NJJ Capital, the one who is known to be the boss of Free will get their hands on the Swiss operator Orange Switzerland. Up to 2.3 billion euros, the transaction is subject to the approval of the competent authorities and should be finalized by the end of the first quarter of 2015.
Orange Switzerland had been sold in February 2012 by Orange to the Apax investment fund for nearly 1.6 billion euros. Since that date, Orange Switzerland – which claims 2.1 million customers – indicates that it has deployed its 4G network to cover 90% of the Swiss population. It is the third mobile operator in Switzerland.
In a press release, Xavier Niel says:
"As the new owner of Orange Switzerland, NJJ Capital will bring continuity to Orange Switzerland customers as well as to its employees and management. (?) Finally, my highest priority will be to manage Orange Switzerland in agreement with the environment and the specific features of the Swiss market. "
Last October, Xavier Niel had given up on his American dream when Deutsche Telekom refused to buy T-Mobile US. But in this failed attempt at 18 billion euros, there was the involvement of the Iliad group.