Eaton Towers secures $60mn to expand Uganda network
- Published on 30 October 2012
African tower ownership and management company, Eaton Towers, has secured $60 million in debt financing to build and develop telecom towers across Uganda.
Capital raised is planned to fund Eaton’s acquisition, in January this year, of nearly 400 towers from Warid Telecoms in Uganda, while the firm also plans to upgrade existing towers and build up to 80 new towers in the country.
Eaton Towers also acquired 300 towers from Orange Uganda in January, resulting in it having 700 towers in Uganda.
South Africa's Standard Bank Group, acting through Stanbic Uganda, and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) have together provided the finance to Eaton Towers.
This $60 million financing includes a $30 million tranche with an 8.5 year maturity from IFC. The remaining $30m tranche is provided by Stanbic Uganda, for a six-year period.
This is Eaton’s second round of bank debt funding in 2012, following a $30m debt facility from Standard Bank Group, acting through Stanbic Bank Ghana and the Standard Bank of South Africa, earlier in the year.
Furthermore, it follows a $150 million equity investment from Capital International Private Equity Funds (“CIPEF”), a private equity investor that focuses on emerging markets, secured by Eaton Towers in September 2011.
“Mobile operators in Africa are increasingly viewing tower sharing as a key strategy to facilitate reductions in operating costs and capex, enabling them to focus on providing mobile services. Eaton Towers is now a leading tower company in Uganda and this funding facility will allow us to further consolidate our position there,” said Peter Lewis, chief financial officer of Eaton Towers.
Eaton Towers also operates towers in Ghana and South Africa and has recently established offices in Kenya.