(Bloomberg) -- Abu Dhabi Investment Authority is considering bidding for a stake in PCCW Ltd.’s fiber business, people familiar with the matter said, a move that would help the oil-rich emirate expand into Greater China.
ADIA, as the Abu Dhabi wealth fund is known, is in discussions for a significant minority stake in PCCW’s fiber assets for about $1 billion, the people said, asking not to be identified because the matter is private.
Talks are ongoing and the parties could still decide against a transaction, the people said. Other bidders could still emerge, they added. Representatives for ADIA and PCCW declined to comment.
PCCW, a telecommunications, media and technology conglomerate controlled by billionaire Richard Li, has been exploring selling a significant minority stake in its fiber business for about $1 billion, Bloomberg News reported last week. The assets had drawn interest from Chinese investors as well as Middle Eastern funds, people familiar with the matter have said.
PCCW, which traces its roots to the Hong Kong Telephone Co. formed in 1925, holds interests in businesses including telecommunications, media, IT solutions, property development and investment, its website shows. The company has been selling stakes across some of its operations, including its over-the-top video service Viu, its data center business and IT services.
Shares of PCCW have risen about 13% this year, giving the company a market value of about $3.9 billion.
Middle Eastern funds including ADIA have spent tens of billions of dollars to diversify portfolios and help Gulf countries win geopolitical influence. ADIA this year agreed to acquire a significant stake in Advent International’s Austrian power equipment maker Innio. The investment followed previous bets on German railcar lessor VTG AG and Emerson Electric Co.’s Climate Technologies business.
--With assistance from Nicolas Parasie.
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