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Liberty Global Buys Romanian Op

Liberty Global Inc.’s UPC Broadband European unit reached a deal to acquire Romanian broadband provider Astral Telecom SA.

Astral currently serves approximately 890,000 video, voice and data revenue-generating units.

UPC Broadband reached the agreement with from a group of Romanian entrepreneurs, foreign investors and AIG New Europe Fund.

Liberty Global already controls more than 360,000 RGUs in other parts of the country through UPC Romania.

UPC Broadband said the transaction is subject to approval by the Romanian competition authorities, and it is expected to close during the fourth quarter.

“This acquisition extends our significant footprint in central and Eastern Europe, where we currently generate our strongest revenue and operating-cash-flow growth,” Liberty Global CEO Mike Fries said in a prepared statement.

“Astral has a major presence in the Romanian capital city of Bucharest, and it has upgraded over 50% of its network to support advanced broadband voice and data services,” he added. “If approved, this transaction will accelerate our investment in the balance of Astral's and UPC's networks.”