Leighton eyes Canadian buyer for telco businesses

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Leighton eyes Canadian buyer for telco businesses

Narrows field for Nextgen, Infoplex, Metronode sell-off.

Leighton Holdings is in talks to sell a 70 percent stake in its fibre networking and data centre businesses to an equities division of the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan in Canada.

The firm said in a financial filing (pdf) that it had entered "exclusive negotiations" with the division to take the 70 percent stake.

The price being negotiated values the total pool of assets at $885 million.

Leighton Holdings CEO Hamish Tyrwhitt said that any sale is "subject to final negotiations, definitive documentation, completion of due diligence and ... closing conditions".

"We are very pleased to have reached an exclusive negotiating position with Teachers', which is well known for its global direct investment program and is a significant owner of assets in a number of countries, including Australia," Tyrwhitt said.

Leighton indicated in September last year that it was exploring the sale of its Nextgen Networks, Metronode and Infoplex businesses.

The company plans to keep its construction-focused subsidiaries Visionstream, John Holland and Thiess joint venture Silcar, all of which have gained significant contracts rolling out the National Broadband Network.

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