France Télécom sells Dutch unit

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France Télécom said Thursday it had agreed to sell its Dutch television unit,
Casema Holding, to three firms for $677 million in cash under pressure to reduce
its massive debt load.

France Télécom is also committed to as much as $15.5 million for services
provided by over the next three years.

The deal with The Carlyle Group, Providence Equity Partners Inc. and GMT
Communications Partners is expected to be completed before the end of January,
France Télécom said.

The company said $160 million would be used to pay off Casema's debt.
France Télécom faces a reported $72 billion in debt.

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