By Shalini Ramachandran and Drew FitzGerald 

AT&T Inc. has agreed to sell its Puerto Rican and U.S. Virgin Islands businesses to Liberty Latin America Ltd. for $1.95 billion in cash, a move that could allow the telecommunications giant to shave its debt load, according to a person familiar with the matter.

The companies plan to announce the deal as soon as Wednesday morning, this person said.

AT&T's operation in Puerto Rico provides cellular, landline and internet connections. The company was initially seeking a valuation of closer to $3 billion for the Puerto Rican assets, this person said.

Liberty is already the biggest pay-TV and broadband provider on the island. Cable tycoon John Malone, who holds a 25.5% voting stake in Liberty Latin America, and Liberty Latin America CEO Balan Nair have told investors they would like to expand in the region through disciplined M&A.

Liberty plans to finance the cash deal in large part by raising debt against the combined Puerto Rican operation, the person said.

Write to Shalini Ramachandran at shalini.ramachandran@wsj.com and Drew FitzGerald at andrew.fitzgerald@wsj.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

October 09, 2019 08:42 ET (12:42 GMT)

Copyright (c) 2019 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
AT&T (NYSE:T)
Historical Stock Chart
From Oct 2020 to Nov 2020 Click Here for more AT&T Charts.
AT&T (NYSE:T)
Historical Stock Chart
From Nov 2019 to Nov 2020 Click Here for more AT&T Charts.