In a surprise move, Sydney based telecommunications giant TPG has announced that it will purchase Western Australian based internet service provider (ISP) iiNet for $1.4 billion dollars.
Prior to this announcement, TPG owned 6.25% of iiNet. The move will merge the two companies to create a subscriber base of 1.7 million users. In an Australian Stock Exchange disclosure, TPG is expecting the acquisition to be finalised and implemented by the middle of July 2015. TPG’s Executive Chairman and CEO David Teoh believed the acquisition will allow TPG to upscale their plans to implement the National Broadband Network: “iiNet and TPG are highly complementary businesses in terms of geographic presence, market segments and corporate customer base.
iiNet chairman Michael Smith said “The board views this as a significant reward for shareholders who have shown their faith in iiNet. The price of $1.4 billion is a very tangible measure of the value that the extraordinary people of iiNet have created through their innovation, brilliant service and capacity to add value.”
The move comes a little over three years after iiNet purchased South Australian based ISP Internode. While the deal will need to be approved by the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission, TPG are claiming to have written notice that the ACCC will not intervene in the acquisition.
In 2011, iiNet won a Full Federal Court case and High Court appeal against the Australian Federation Against Copyright Theft (AFACT) alleging that the ISP was authoring copyright infringement by failing to take steps to prevent its customer base from illegally downloading files and films.
Edited to reflect pending nature of acquisition