KKR Nearing Deal to Buy Stake in Fiber Company MetroNet

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KKR & Co. is nearing a deal to acquire a minority stake in MetroNet that values the provider of fiber-optic internet, phone and television services at almost $3 billion including debt, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

A transaction could be announced as soon as this week, the people said. Oak Hill Capital, a private equity firm, will invest additional capital into the company, the people said.

KKR and Oak Hill representatives declined to comment. A spokesperson for Evansville, Indiana-based MetroNet didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Founded in 2005 with one fiber-optic network in Greencastle, Indiana, MetroNet operates in 80 communities in Indiana, Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, Florida and Ohio. MetroNet last year acquired Jaguar Communications, a fiber-optic provider in Minnesota.

Read more: KKR to Buy Majority Stake in Chile’s Fiber Optic Network

U.S. telecommunications infrastructure appeals to private equity investors seeking both stable returns and continued growth. Oak Hill in January said it invested in NetSpeed LLC, a fiber operator doing business in Pennsylvania and Connecticut. GTCR, another private equity firm, last week said it invested in Point Broadband, a provide of fiber and high-speed data services to markets east of the Mississippi River.

Activity extends beyond the U.S. Earlier this month, KKR and DTCP announced the launch of Open Dutch Fiber, a jointly owned platform to deploy fiber broadband in the Netherlands.

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