BCE May Be Trying to Extract Some Lost Value - UBS

Dec. 9.08 | About: BCE Inc. (BCE)

BCE Inc.’s (NYSE:BCE) announcement on Monday suggests that a second opinion on its post-transaction solvency from PricewaterhouseCooper's yielded a different opinion than KPMG’s.

The telecom giant said in a statement:

While BCE believes that PwC’s work supports the company’s position, PwC has not been engaged to provide the solvency opinion required in connection with the closing of the transaction.

BCE and the purchasers agreed to use their “reasonable best efforts” to close the deal, according to UBS analyst Jeffrey Fan, so BCE could simply be trying to fulfill its obligations by seeking another firm to help satisfy the solvency opinion condition. However, PwC was not engaged by the purchaser, which is a condition in the Definitive Agreement. So if this does not occur, the condition will unlikely be met, Mr. Fan told clients.

Reiterating a C$25.50 price target based on fundamentals, he said:

With 3 days remaining before the lenders’ commitment expires, one could infer that BCE and/or the Purchaser may be trying to extract from the lenders some contribution to BCE’s lost value.