Lumen Technologies (Lumen) and Colt Technology Services (Colt) announced Wednesday they have entered into an exclusive arrangement for the proposed sale of Lumen's Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) business to Colt for $1.8 billion. This represents a very attractive multiple (~11x) for Lumen EMEA business's estimated 2021 adjusted EBITDA.
The transaction is subject to customary conditions and would involve the divestiture by Lumen of its EMEA business, including its terrestrial and subsea networks, data centers and network equipment in the region to London-headquartered Colt. Upon completion, the transaction will further Lumen's strategic focus on investing in core businesses that are expected to drive long-term, profitable growth.
Under the agreement, Lumen will continue to serve multinational enterprise customers through its strategic partnership with Colt.
Known for its commitment to customer experience and its industry-leading environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance, Colt is a global digital infrastructure business with over 60 offices around the world. The transaction will extend Colt's infrastructure to new geographic markets, boosting the services and capabilities it delivers to global enterprises and strategic partners, positioning Colt to meet growing enterprise and international IP traffic in EMEA via extensive terrestrial and subsea reach.
Most of Lumen's EMEA employees would join Colt after the transaction closes. Colt and Lumen will establish a strategic relationship that will enable Lumen to continue delivering a seamless experience for its multinational customers with needs in EMEA. The partnership will also allow Colt to continue serving the needs of the EMEA-based customers with service needs outside of EMEA.
Lumen and Colt envisage the transaction would close as early as late 2023 upon receipt of all regulatory approvals in the U.S. and certain countries where Colt operates, as well as the satisfaction of other customary conditions.
The purchase agreement contains various customary covenants for transactions of this type, including various indemnities and purchase price adjustments.
Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC is acting as financial advisor to Lumen in connection with the transaction, and Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP is serving as legal advisor to Lumen. Evercore Group L.L.C. is acting as financial advisor to Colt in connection with the transaction and Baker & McKenzie LLP is serving as legal advisor to Colt.