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‘Exciting growth journey’: White & Case advises Polish telecoms company Play on €1bn IPO

White & Case has again advised Polish telecoms group Play Communications and its shareholders, Novator and Olympia, this time on Play’s €1bn initial public offering (IPO) on the Warsaw stock exchange.

The IPO, which is the largest in the telecommunications sector in the past two years, values Poland’s second biggest mobile network operator Play at €4bn.

The company is controlled by Greek investor Olympia Development and Iceland’s Novator Partners. It has more than 14m customers.

White & Case’s team was led by private equity partner Ian Bagshaw and corporate finance partner Jill Concannon. London-based partners Jonathan Parry in capital markets, Prabhu Narasimhan in tax, Martin Forbes in private equity, Nicholas Greenacre in employment and Warsaw-based capital markets partner Marcin Studniarek also advised for Play.

Bagshaw said the firm’s lawyers in London and Warsaw had advised on a ‘complex and successful IPO that will allow the company to continue its exciting growth journey’.

Concannon told Legal Business: ‘This all about the high yield to IPO. We got this up and running in ten weeks from high yield to pricing which is extremely unusual. The only reason we were able to do that is we had a high yield prospectus that was basically 90% there which put the company in the starting block so that they could hit the ground running and hit the summer window – something we wouldn’t have been able to do without it.’

White & Case has advised Play on a number of deals since 2014. In 2014, Play returned to White & Case on its €415 million senior PIK toggle notes offering, with a team led by Concannon, capital markets partner Rob Mathews and Bagshaw.

The firm also advised Play earlier this year on term loan facilities and a revolving credit facility of up to zł7bn, led by Bagshaw and Forbes.

Latham & Watkins advised the underwriters, JP Morgan Bank of America Merrill Lynch and UBS Investment Bank, with a team led by corporate partner Brett Cassidy and capital markets partner Olof Clausson.