July 13, 2021
Apollo Global Management reportedly wants to acquire consumer assets from Lumen Technologies in a deal worth more than $5 billion.
Bloomberg broke the news that Apollo is in talks to acquire Lumen’s consumer operations in certain U.S. states. It cited people with knowledge of the matter. Those same sources said if the two sides come to an agreement, they might announce a deal in the coming weeks.
Apollo didn’t respond to our request for comment. Mark Molzen is Lumen‘s global issues director.
Lumen’s Mark Molzen
“We are excited about the future of our consumer business and are investing in enhanced product capabilities, expanding our fiber footprint and improving digital interaction with our consumer customers,” he said. “As a normal part of our business, we also evaluate all aspects of our business to ensure we are using our assets to deliver the best value for our customers, and shareholders. If we see opportunities to increase value with alternate approaches, we look into our options. We do not comment on specific rumors or speculation.”
Lumen Looking to Sell Non-Core Assets
During Lumen’s first-quarter 2021 earnings call, Jeff Storey, Lumen’s president and CEO, said his company is “actively looking at selling non-core assets to unlock value in our business, further accelerate deleveraging and implement potential buyback programs.”
“That said, we have been and will remain disciplined,” he said. “We have confidence in our future and don’t feel compelled to undertake any specific transaction. If we find transactions that are positive to shareholders, we won’t hesitate to move forward.”
Storey told analysts Lumen understands it must improve its revenue trajectory.
“It does not happen overnight in a business such as ours, but we know we must improve,” he said.
Jay McBain is Forrester’s principal analyst of channel partnerships and alliances.
“I think it is a strong move on both sides,” he said. “Lumen gets to narrow in on the $3.5 trillion of technology opportunity that businesses and governments spend around the world per year, while Apollo gets to further build/rollup business-to-consumer (B2C) consumer assets in addition to AOL, Yahoo and ADT.”
CenturyLink operates a fiber network spanning about 450,000 miles and has customers in over 60 countries. In addition to serving business and government clients, its consumer business provides internet access to suburban and rural U.S. areas.
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