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Warburg Pincus enters race for T-Mobile Netherlands: sources

[LONDON] US private equity firm Warburg Pincus is looking to bid for Deutsche Telekom's T-Mobile Netherlands division which is worth up to 3 billion euros(S$4.57 billion), three sources familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.

Warburg Pincus is working on the deal with Deutsche Telekom's former Chief Executive Officer René Obermann who was hired by the New York-based private equity fund in February.

Mr Obermann, also a former Chief Executive of Dutch cable operator Ziggo, knows the Dutch market well and is working closely with another Warburg Pincus partner, Andrew Sukawaty, who chaired Ziggo while Obermann was its CEO.

Mr Sukawaty, 60, moved to Warburg Pincus in December 2014 and he's the executive chairman of satellite operator Inmarsat and a former vice chairman of Britain's mobile phone operator O2.

Reuters reported on Tuesday that T-Mobile Netherlands expects non-binding offers by Nov 16.

French entrepreneur Xavier Niel's telecoms group Iliad has no plans to bid for the company which lags competitors KPN and Vodafone in the Dutch market, another source said.