Aussie Broadband to acquire Over The Wire for $390 million

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Aussie Broadband to acquire Over The Wire for $390 million
Phil Britt (Aussie Broadband)

Aussie Broadband has announced it is set to acquire fellow ASX-listed telco and 2021 CRN Fast50 inductee Over The Wire for $390.4 million.

The deal was first revealed in late October 2021, with Aussie Broadband confirming that it was in talks to buy OTW at the time, with the latter also confirming it a few days later.

In an ASX announcement, Aussie will acquire 100 percent of OTW for $5.75 per share, retaining the amount in the former’s original offer in October. In comparison, OTW currently trades at $5.40 per share with a market capitalisation of $322 million.

Aussie Broadband said the acquisition would bolster its business segment, specifically its product and skills capability. OTW also adds 16,000 business, enterprise, government and wholesale customers to Aussie’s 28,000 business customers and 410,000 residential customers.

Aussie Broadband will also move its voice services from third party carriers onto OTW’s voice network, while OTW customers will move to Aussie’s internally developed integrated CRM & billing platform. Aussie’s network automation and Carbon platform will also be combined with OTW’s NetSIP voice automation platform.

Aussie managing director Phillip Britt said the company was thrilled to reach the milestone.

“We believe Over the Wire is a great match to complement our current range of services. It’s a high quality business in a large and growing segment of the Australian telecommunications market,” Britt said.

“After several weeks of getting to know the company’s senior team, we very much look forward to welcoming OTW to the Aussie Broadband family.”

Over The Wire said its board unanimously recommended that shareholders vote in favour of the acquisition, unless a superior proposal comes up.

OTW chair Stephe Wilks said, “We admire the Aussie Broadband business’ strong ambitions and proven execution, and we are excited about the compelling customer propositions that OTW and [Aussie Broadband] can bring to market together.”

OTW group chief executive Michael Omeros said, “This is an exciting next step in the OTW journey, and I am very proud of what the OTW team has built over the years which is reflected in this compelling proposal for the company.”

Upon completion of the deal, Omeros will join Aussie Broadband’s board of directors, replacing director John Reisinger. Reisinger will remain Aussie’s chief technology officer.

The acquisition will be effected through a court-approved scheme of arrangement, with OTW shareholders to vote for the acquisition on February 2022. If approved, the deal is expected to complete in March 2022.

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