Australia’s Vocus says EQT drops $2.3b buyout bid

Photo: Vocus

Vocus Group Ltd said on Tuesday that Swedish private equity firm EQT Infrastructure had withdrawn its A$3.3-billion ($2.30 billion) buyout offer for the telecoms company.

“Following an accelerated period of due diligence, EQT has decided not to proceed with the transaction outlined in the indicative proposal,” Vocus said in a statement.

Vocus also reiterated its fiscal 2019 underlying core earnings guidance, expected in the range of A$350-A$370 million.

The withdrawal comes just a few days after Australian energy retailer AGL Energy revealed that it had made and then quit a takeover offer for Vocus as it could not agree on due diligence terms with the telecoms firm.

EQT’s offer, which was at a 35% premium to Vocus’ then last close, had come just as Vocus’ turnaround plan was beginning to gain traction. The company had allowed EQT to conduct non-exclusive due diligence terms.

A spokeswoman for EQT declined to comment on the development.