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Australian prison phone provider sells majority share to European market leader

Australian prison phone specialist, Comsec TR, has sold a majority stake in its business to European prison media and communications provider Telio.

The Sydney based company was founded in 1991 and later designed and developed the ACTS prisoner phone system, with the first prisoner phone system installed in an Australian prison in Perth in 1996.

Today Comsec TR is the provider of prison phone systems in Victoria, Queensland and Tasmania, servicing almost half the Australian prisoner population.

The investment marks Telio’s first step into the Asia Pacific region and continues the company’s global expansion roll out. Hamburg-based Telio provides its inmate phone system in Europe, the Middle East and Northern Africa, servicing 20 countries, over 650 prisons and more than 300,000 inmates.

“Comsec is an ideal match for the Telio Group and a great stepping-stone for our expansion into the Asia Pacific region,” said Oliver Drews, CEO of Telio.

“Our new colleagues from Comsec are trusted, long-term partners of the Australian corrections authorities and together we are perfectly positioned to continue on our growth path,” he said.

Comsec TR will continue to be led by current CEO Rosalie Windust – an industry expert with over 25 years’ experience – ensuring the company’s proven service model will continue uninterrupted. It is planned that Comsec TR will roll out the Telio software to the Australian prison market in the medium term.

“The time was right for us to partner with a world leading technology provider. Having the first ever prisoner phone system in Australia is something we are immensely proud of. However, whilst it has been a very solid platform that has evolved over time, the Telio system is technologically superior and the future for Comsec,” said Rosalie Windust, CEO of Comsec TR.

Todd Grover, BDO Partner and lead advisor on the deal to Comsec, said whilst large cross-border transactions are not without challenges, this deal saw both parties benefit greatly with what the other brings to the table.

“We were aware of Telio’s interest in the Australian market but Comsec was a challenging target to identify, given its low-profile presence. Despite being an iconic Australian business, not many people outside the industry are aware of who they are,” Todd said.

BDO acted as the exclusive lead advisor to Comsec TR. Carlsquare Hamburg acted as the exclusive advisor to Telio. The terms of the transaction remain confidential.

 

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