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UPDATE 1-Debt-ridden Altice looks to sell Dominican Republic network -FT
November 23, 2017 / 7:46 AM / in 18 days

UPDATE 1-Debt-ridden Altice looks to sell Dominican Republic network -FT

(Adds Altice no comment, details, background)

* Altice: no comment to make on FT report

* Altice says to sell assets to cut debt

PARIS, Nov 23 (Reuters) - Telecoms and cable group Altice , whose shares have been hit by concerns over its roughly 50 billion euros ($59.1 billion) debt burden, is looking to sell its telecoms network in the Dominican Republic, the Financial Times reported.

The sale of Altice Dominican Republic is still at an early stage and plans could change, added the FT, citing its own sources.

A spokesman for Altice declined to comment on the report.

Altice’s billionaire founder and majority shareholder Patrick Drahi has pledged to sell assets to cut down Altice’s debts.

This week, Altice reiterated it had identified assets that could be sold, including its portfolio of telecoms towers, and that sales could start as early as the first half of 2018.

Weak third-quarter results this month prompted Drahi, whose media empire includes telecoms company SFR, newspaper Liberation and BFM TV, to oust chief executive Michel Combes.

Altice shares have fallen some 60 percent this year, with hedge funds having sold out of shares in Altice’s U.S. unit, although ABN AMRO analysts put out a “buy” rating on Altice, saying debt worries might be overdone.

ABN AMRO analysts wrote: “35 billion euros of 48 billion euros of net debt have been refinanced in the last year, and we see neither a breach of covenant nor a share issue looming.”

$1 = 0.8456 euros Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; editing by Jason Neely

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