* Liberty Global increased stake to 58.3 pct from 50.4 pct
* Telenet shares down, but still above bid price of 35
BRUSSELS Jan 18 U.S. cable group Liberty Global
said on Friday it would not extend its bid for Belgian
cable operator Telenet, in which it now holds a 58.3
The group held a controlling 50.4 percent of Telenet when it
offered 35 euros per share to gain full control of the company
in September last year, but most shareholders held out for a
Liberty Global's offer valued the remaining stake in the
Belgian operator, which provides television, broadband and
mobile phone services in the Dutch-speaking north of Belgium, at
1.96 billion euros ($2.6 billion).
Liberty Global said in an official announcement in Belgian
business dailies De Tijd and L'Echo that it now held 58.3
percent of Telenet and 58.4 percent of the voting rights. It
also said it would not reopen the bid, which was to expire on
Telenet's shares traded 3 percent lower in early trading
around 35.65 euros, still above Liberty Global's bid value.
If Liberty Global wanted to extend or increase its bid in
the coming 12 months, it would have to also offer the new
conditions to those shareholders who had already tendered their
shares, KBC analyst Tom Simonts said.
"It is as boring as it can be, the offer has been
completed," said Simonts, who has an "Accumulate" recommendation
on the shares.
"It's business as usual now with the focus returning to
their business performance and valuation of the shares."
Telenet unexpectedly released a trading update last week,
saying its 2012 revenues rose by 8.2 percent to 1.49 billion
euros, beating analysts' average forecast of 1.48 billion and
company guidance for growth of 7-8 percent.