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February 23, 1989

CABLE & WIRELESS LIKELY TO HAVE TO SELL LIBERA STAKE, PUTTING VALUE ON BUSINESS

By CBR Staff Writer

Reputedly under pressure from the Department of Trade & Industry, Telephone Rentals Plc may sell its 13.5% stake in Libera Development, developers of Ferranti Creditphone’s Telepoint system. Having awarded a Telepoint licence to Mercury Communications Ltd last month (CI No 1,103), the Department appears to have precluded Cable & Wireless Plc – whose bid for Telephone Rentals Plc has gone unconditionl – from also holding a share in Libera. If it does sell the stake to a third party, it would provide a firm valuation on Ferranti’s Telepoint operator’s licence, which in turn would likely suggest that Ferranti’s shares are undervalued. AT&T Co is thought to be interested, although Ferranti itself may be keen to snap up a greater share of Libera. All minority shareholders who wish to sell their stake must approach the appointed merchant bankers, Goldman Sachs International Corp. Telephone Rentals was not available for comment.

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