MADRID, April 10 Spain's Telefonica is
planning a partial listing of its Colombian business to help it
cut debt, Spanish online news site El Confidencial reported on
Wednesday, citing financial sources.
Telefonica, which owns 70 percent of Telefonica Telecom,
with the rest held by the Colombian government, has hired Bank
of America Merrill Lynch to study the option of an initial
public offering (IPO), the newspaper said.
Telefonica and Bank of America Merrill Lynch declined to
comment on the report.
The Spanish telecoms giant wants to lower its debt to below
47 billion euros ($61.37 billion) by year-end from 51.3 billion
In February, it scrapped a plan to list its broader Latin
Espirito Santo analysts estimated that Telefonica's stake in
the Colombian business was worth around 1.07 billion euros, so a
listing would make only a small contribution to the group's debt
"However, we would not be surprised to see Telefonica
carrying out operations such as these in the near term to
provide even more comfort on its debt reduction target," the
analysts said in a note to clients.
Telefonica raised 975 million euros last month by selling
all its treasury stock.