Global investment bank VTB Capital has acquired a minority stake in National Satellite Company, the largest Russian satellite TV operator operating under ‘Tricolor TV’ brand.
The aim of VTB Capital as a global investment bank and a financial investor is to help Tricolor TV to increase value of its assets and get prepared for an IPO in few years.
Tim Demchenko, Global Head of Private Equity and Special Situations at VTB Capital said that the investment was one more step in implementing VTB Capital’s private equity strategy to invest in consumer-related industries in Russia. “We believe its strong market position and countrywide footprint will enable the company to capitalise on opportunities in rapidly growing Russian pay-TV market and successfully complete IPO in the next few years,” he explained.
Alexander Makarov, CEO of National Satellite Company, said the VTB Group partnershipwas a strategic step which would allow the Company to get prepared for the next level of its development.
With its subscriber base over 12.4 million (registered subscribers) including paying subscribers of 9.12 million as of March 25, 2013, Tricolor TV is the leader of Russia’s pay-TV market and one of the largest pay TV providers in Europe. Tricolor TV has been broadcasting its digital channel package in the European part of Russia as well as the Siberian, Ural and Far East regions. According to IHS Screen Digest, Tricolor TV is ranked first in the world for the pace of growth of subscriber base in 2012. Tricolor TV holds the third position in the ranking of the world’s largest television operators according to the number of subscribers.