Hicks Muse buys into Cenezuelan cable TV company

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DALLAS -- Leveraged buyout firm Hicks Muse Tate & Furst Inc. and a group of investors have bought into Intercable, a Venezuelan cable TV company with subscribers in six major cities.

The buyout firm will also pour additional capital into Intercable to buy cable systems in five additional mid-sized markets in Venezuela and fund the expansion of Inter- cable's infrastructure system-wide.

The addition of the acquired subscribers will make Intercable the second-biggest cable operator in Venezuela.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Intercable will focus on building clusters around its existing markets and on buying other cable operations in mid-sized markets throughout Venezuela, says Alan B. Menkes, a managing director and principal of Hicks Muse.

The company says the deal is complementary to the $500 million investment fund Ibero-American Media Partners, formed in December by Hicks Muse and the Cisneros Group of Caracas, which will focus mainly on building a network of TV and radio broadcasting and programming assets.

Copyright February 1998, Crain Communications Inc.

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