The Emerging Africa Infrastructure Fund (EAIF) has committed to buy up to $50 million (R745 million) of a bond issue by Liquid Telecom.
Today, the company launched the bond, which aims to raise $600 million (R8.9 billion).
The capital raised from the bond issue will be used to refinance existing debt and for corporate purposes.
EAIF, acting through its agent Ninety One SA, along with The International Finance Corporation (IFC) and DEG-Deutsche Investitions-und Entwicklungsgesellschaft mbH (DEG), has committed to placing orders to purchase up to an aggregate $178 million (R2,6 billion) in the New Note Offering.
Liquid Telecom has built Africa’s largest independent fibre network, stretching more than 70,000km, and operates state-of-the-art data centres in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Nairobi, with a combined potential 19,000 square metres of rack space and 78 MW of power. This is in addition to offering leading cloud-based services, such as Microsoft Office365 and Microsoft Azure across our fibre footprint. Through this combined offering Liquid Telecom is enhancing customers’ experience on their digital journey.
“Growing Africa’s digital infrastructure is a key foundation stone in recovering the continent from the global economic devastation of Covid. EAIF has supported the growth of Africa’s digital and telecommunications sector since 2003,” Sumit Kanodia, an Investment Director at EAIF’s manager, Ninety One, says.
“We have given support to projects including marine and terrestrial fibre optics, communications towers and satellites that have brought advanced communications to Africa and had significant economic development impact on many countries. Liquid Telecom is a dynamic and successful business we are pleased to support.”
EAIF’s support for the Liquid Telecom bond issue is its fourth large-scale transaction in Africa’s digital and telecommunications sector in the past 12 months. In 2020, EAIF supported bond issues by Helios Towers plc and Sonatel, the Senegal-based regional digital and telecommunications business. The bond issues mobilised c$800 million in private capital invested in high-technology African business. EAIF also loaned US$40 million to the West Indian Ocean Cable Co (WIOCC), as part of WIOCC’s corporate development programme.
CDC, the UK’s development finance institution, has today announced a $40 million (R652 million) equity investment in Liquid Telecom, Africa’s largest independent fibre, data centre and cloud technology provider.
This marks CDC’s second investment in the company, following a $180 million equity investment in 2018. CDC’s additional investment is made as part of Liquid Telecom’s wider fundraise where the company attracted $307 million through a rights issue to shareholders.
CDC’s investment will enable Liquid Telecom to further expand its pan-African data centre operation business, Africa Data Centres, and consolidate its position as the leading data centre operator on the continent.
Also read: Liquid Telecom Response to COVID-19