Korea Thrunet Co., Ltd. (Nasdaq: KOREA) ("Thrunet"), a Korea-based cable modem broadband Internet-access services provider and provider of enterprise network services, announced it plans to submit a Letter of Interest on August 10, 2001 to bid for a 30 percent stake in Powercomm, an operator of a nationwide fiber optic and Hybrid Fiber Coaxial ("HFC") network.
Korea Electric Power Corporation ("KEPCO"), the majority owner of Powercomm with an 89.5 percent holding, has announced an intent to sell the 30 percent stake (45 million shares) in a single block, and to transfer management control to the purchaser. The purchaser will also receive an option to buy an additional 5 percent in new shares.
As part of its long-term privatization plan for Powercomm, KEPCO sold shares representing a 10.5 percent interest in Powercomm in July 2000, and expects to complete the 30-percent-stake sale by the end of 2001 and the complete privatization of Powercomm by the end of 2002. Thrunet will submit an in-depth investment proposal to KEPCO by the end of September 2001, containing its detailed financing plans for the acquisition. KEPCO has stated that it expects a preferred bidder to be selected by the end of October 2001, and that the transaction should be concluded in November 2001.
Thrunet's participation in the Powercomm bid process has been approved by its major shareholders, including SOFTBANK Corporation. The Company plans to submit the bid with the principal support of such bid by SOFTBANK and SB Asia Infrastructure Fund ("the Fund"), the first fund of a series of funds totaling in excess of $ 1.05 billion focused on and created primarily for investments in Asian broadband and wireless businesses. The Company, with the anticipated support of SOFTBANK and the Fund, will open participation to other strategic and financial investors, both domestic and international. The Company stressed that, although it seeks to acquire the holding, it will only pursue a bid at an appropriate valuation.
About Korea Thrunet:
Korea Thrunet Co., Ltd. is a provider of broadband Internet access services and enterprise network services in Korea. For more information, visit www.thrunet.com.