Tower operator Eaton Towers has raised US$350m (about R4,4bn) in new equity funding from existing and new shareholders to fund expansion and acquisitions across Africa, it said on Friday.
At the same time, the company has signed what it describes as the first independent tower deal in Egypt with the purchase, leaseback and management of more than 2 000 towers belonging to mobile operator Mobinil, which is owned by France’s Orange.
Two new shareholders have joined Eaton Towers as part of the fundraising exercise. They are South African fund manager Ethos Private Equity and Standard Chartered Private Equity.
Existing shareholders Equity Capital Group Private Markets – which is the controlling shareholder of Eaton Towers through its sixth global emerging markets private equity fund, DPI — and Eaton Towers’ management have also invested additional equity.
The Mobinil deal involves a 15-year leaseback contract for the operation and maintenance of 2 000 sites as well as the construction of new base station infrastructure.
Eaton Towers CEO Terry Rhodes said in a statement that Egypt is the second largest mobile market in Africa. The company intends investing more than $200m in infrastructure.
Once the Mobinil transaction and the agreements with Bharti Airtel for six countries signed and announced last September are completed, Eaton Towers will be operational in eight countries, he said. — (c) 2015 NewsCentral Media