Maxcom Suitor Ventura to Walk Away If Swap Threshold UnmetCrayton Harrison and Jonathan Levin
Maxcom Telecomunicaciones SAB’s takeover suitor, Ventura Capital Privado SA, plans to withdraw its pursuit of the Mexican phone company if it can’t persuade enough bondholders to exchange their debt by tomorrow, its adviser on the deal said.
Ventura remains interested in pumping new capital into Maxcom to help it expand, especially in the corporate market, said Ricardo Cervera, a founding partner of Vace Partners, Ventura’s adviser. Still, he said Ventura isn’t willing to stick around to usher Maxcom through a bankruptcy filing, an outcome the phone carrier has said it may be forced to pursue.
Maxcom is seeking to complete the 2.90-pesos-a-share takeover offer, which would include an investment of $45 million to use for network improvements, to better compete with America Movil SAB, Mexico’s biggest phone company. Mexico City-based Maxcom said this month it may have to file for bankruptcy and may miss a June 15 coupon payment if enough debtholders don’t agree to the bond swap by tomorrow’s deadline.
A Maxcom spokesman didn’t return e-mail messages, and no one answered the phone of the company’s investor relations office.
The company has asked to exchange notes due in 2014 for new ones due in 2020, and Ventura has set a requirement that 80 percent of bondholders accept the swap. Ventura has the right to reduce that threshold to 75.1 percent at its discretion. Maxcom’s cash had dwindled to 102.9 million pesos ($8.4 million) from 147 million pesos at the end of 2012, it said April 11.
Maxcom has climbed about 65 percent above Ventura’s offer price as investors bet its future will be brighter under a law Mexican Congress is reviewing to create more competition in telecommunications. Its shares fell less than 1 percent to 4.81 pesos at the close in Mexico City.
Ventura, which announced its offer for Maxcom in December, is a Mexico City-based private-equity firm led by investors including Enrique Castillo and Javier Molinar Horcasitas, former executives of bank Ixe Grupo Financiero SAB. Ixe was sold in 2011 to Grupo Financiero Banorte SAB.