July 24, 2018 / 1:07 PM / 4 months ago

Foreign private equity funds interested in Bezeq control - report

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - A number of foreign private equity funds such as Highland Capital and Searchlight Capital are interested in buying a controlling share in Bezeq Israel Telecom (BEZQ.TA), the Globes financial news website said on Wednesday.

Globes said that despite pressure by bondholders of Internet Gold-Golden Lines (IGLD.O) to sell the controlling stake in Bezeq to private local buyer the Neuman family, Internet Gold’s board is going ahead with a regular sale process.

To that end, it said, the company has appointed Deutsche Bank (DBKGn.DE) to lead the sale of the controlling interest in Israel’s largest telecoms group.

Deutsche Bank declined to comment while Bezeq officials were not immediately available for comment.

Internet Gold said last month it was in advanced talks to divest most of its shares in B Communications (BCOM.TA), through which it controls Bezeq, to the Neuman Group for as much as 746 million shekels ($204 million).

It has said it was examining offers to sell some or all of its 64.78 percent stake in BCom, a company with a single asset - a 26.34 percent controlling stake in Bezeq.

Internet Gold is controlled by indebted Israeli holding company Eurocom. Any deal would require regulatory approval.

($1 = 3.6490 shekels)

Reporting by Steven Scheer; Additional reporting by Arno Schuetze in Frankfurt;Editing by Kirsten Donovan

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