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Thursday, September 11, 2014

PLDT paying up remainder of investment in Rocket ahead of planned IPO

Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co (PLDT) today said it will soon complete the payment of its investment in Germany's Rocket Internet AG after the European owner of Zalora and Lazada announced a plan to go public in the fourth quarter of this year.

PLDT and Rocket earlier entered a global strategic partnership to develop innovative online payments solutions in emerging markets.

Under the terms of the partnership agreement, PLDT would invest €333 million or $445 million in Rocket. Of this amount, 50 percent has already been paid.

Following the announcement of Rocket’s intention to proceed with an initial public offering (IPO), PLDT will now pay in full the remaining 50 percent of its investment in the e-commerce platform developer.

Rocket's IPO is intended to take place later this year on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. If it pushes through, the IPO is expected to consist solely of new shares from a capital increase.

The new shares will be of the same class and bearing the same rights as shares held by existing Rocket shareholders.

Besides PLDT, other Rocket shareholders consist of Global Founders GmbH (“Global Founders”, which is the investment vehicle of Oliver Samwer, the founder and CEO of Rocket, and his brothers), Investment AB Kinnevik (Kinnevik), Access Industries (Access), United Internet (UI) and HV Holtzbrinck Ventures (HV).

All existing shareholders of Rocket will remain invested and will not sell any shares as part of the offering. All six shareholders have signed lock up commitments not to sell or otherwise dispose of their stakes for at least 12 months.

Rocket intends to use the proceeds from the IPO to finance its future growth through the launch of new businesses and to provide additional equity capital to its network of companies.

Rocket provides a platform for the rapid creation and scaling of consumer internet businesses outside the U.S. and China, with the German company having more than 20,000 employees in its network across over 100 countries, with aggregated revenues in excess of €700 million in 2013.

Its most prominent brands include leading Southeast Asian e-Commerce businesses Zalora and Lazada, as well as fast growing brands with strong positions in their markets such as Dafiti, Linio, Jumia, Namshi, Lamoda, Jabong, Westwing, Home24 and HelloFresh, in Latin America, Africa, Middle East, Russia, India and Europe.

Alongside e-Commerce and marketplaces, financial technology and payments comprise Rocket's third sector where it anticipates numerous and significant growth opportunities.

- Interaksyon

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