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June 23, 2017

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Ting Hsin emerges victorious after CNS acquisition contest

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Chia Hsien-der (賈先德), Vice President of the Ting Hsin International Group (頂新集團) yesterday announced that a task force has been formed to facilitate the transition following the company's acquisition of China Network Systems (CNS, 中嘉), Taiwan's largest cable TV operator.

Incidentally, Ting Hsin Chairman Wei Ying-jiao (魏應交), who also serves as the chairman of the Taiwan Star Cellular Co. (台灣之星) yesterday hinted that the conglomerate is poised to "welcome another prized daughter-in-law into the fold" at the telecom carrier's 4G LTE network launching ceremony yesterday.

Chia's statements yesterday marked the end of a contest between a number of heavyweight enterprises including Far EasTone (遠傳) and Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. (鴻海) who vied for the acquisition of CNS from its majority shareholder MBK Partners.

Reports indicate that negotiations between Ting Hsin and MBK had been completed last Friday, with the two company keeping mum until yesterday.

Chia explained that a subsidiary company will be established to carry out the take over CNS, with Ting Hsin's Wei (魏) family reserving a leading role in the firm's management, with its controlling stake exceeding 50 percent.

Acquisition Price Set to Be Highest in History

While Chia declined to provide details on the acquisition due to nondisclosure agreements, sources close to the company estimate that Ting Hsin spent at least NT$67 billion, exceeding the NT$65 billion in personal funds paid by Fubon Financial Chairman Daniel M. Tsai (蔡明忠) to acquire cable TV operator Kbro (凱擘) in 2010.

MBK Resolves Dispute with Want Want China Holdings to Expedite CNS Sale

Want Want China Holdings (旺中) previously entered an agreement to acquire CNS from MBK Partners for NT$76 billion, which ultimately fell through after the deal was rejected by the National Communication Commission (NCC), with the regulator citing stringent counter-monopoly limitations on the reputedly pro-China company.

Most notably, reports indicate that MBK had recently agreed to reimburse a NT$2 billion payment by Want Want China Holdings in a previous attempt to extend the time line of its CNS acquisition bid, freeing up the cable TV operator for other prospective buyers.

Hon Hai's Terry Gou Reportedly Irate over Outcome of CNS Bid

According to reports, Hon Hai Chairman Terry Gou (郭台銘) was irate over the outcome of the CNS acquisition, stating that current regulatory limits are unfair. Reports indicate that Hon Hai's bid had been facing immense difficulties in gaining regulators' approval, as public sector entities are holding a 4 percent stake on the world's largest electronics contract manufacturer, a condition that bars the company from investing in the media and broadcasting sector. Gou stated that inflexible government guidelines will hamper the progress of Taiwanese business. In response, the NCC stated that required amendments were tied up at the Legislative Yuan.

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