Former Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure has partnered with private equity firm Apollo Global Management to launch a potential takeover bid for Latin American carrier Millicom, a deal that could be valued at around $9 billion.

Millicom said it was discussing an agreement to acquire all of its outstanding shares with Apollo and Claure Group, though it said there was no certainty that a merger would materialize and did not disclose the proposed terms.

The operator issued the statement in response to market speculation after financial times (FOOT) first reported the news.

FOOT stated that the two groups are considering an offer valued in the high teens per share, and Millicom’s stock price last closed at $14.83 before news of a potential deal broke.

Given Millicom’s sizable debts of around $6.9 billion, the company would be valued at around $9 billion.

FOOT He added that Claure and Apollo are trying to structure an offer that will avoid paying down or refinancing existing debt, due to the current turbulence in financial markets.

For Claure, the Millicom acquisition would represent something of a return to telecommunications. He has extensive experience in the sector, founding mobile phone distributor Brightstar before selling the company to SoftBank Group in 2014.

He then served as Sprint’s CEO for four years, before becoming SoftBank’s chief operating officer in May 2018. left the position in 2022 and later founded the Claure Group, a global investment company.

Meanwhile, Apollo has invested heavily in telecommunications in recent years, paying $7.5 billion in 2022 to acquire Lumen Technologies, a US broadband and telephony provider.

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