The UK investment company plans to diversify its portfolio with the new deal, which is expected to close later this year.
Ireland’s Speed Fibre Group is being acquired by UK investor Cordiant Digital Infrastructure Limited (Cord) for a total enterprise value of €190.5m.
The equity portion of the deal is €97m, which will be funded by €68m in cash and €29m through a vendor loan note. This note will have an initial interest rate of 6pc and a maturity of four years.
Speed Fibre is focused on telecoms infrastructure and operates 5,400km of fibre and wireless backhaul across Ireland. The company provides dark fibre, wavelength and ethernet services for various customers including carriers, internet service providers, corporate customers and the Irish Government.
Cord said Speed Fibre is primarily a “backbone provider” but noted that its subsidiary, Magnet Plus, provides connection and service to roughly 10,000 business and retail customers in Ireland. Speed Fibre acquired Magnet Plus in 2020.
The Speed Fibre Group also includes Enet, the wholesale telecoms provider that handles various metro fibre networks across Ireland.
Upon closing the deal, Speed Fibre will be the fourth digital infrastructure platform acquired by Cord since its launch in 2021. The UK company said it primarily invests in the core infrastructure of the digital economy, such as data centres, fibre-optic networks and telecommunications.
Cord said the new acquisition will diversify its portfolio on both a sub-sector and geographical basis. The acquisition is expected to close later this year, subject to regulatory approval in Ireland and the UK.
Cord chair Shonaid Jemmett-Page said the deal is a “milestone”, as Speed Fibre operates in a market where data consumption growth is “expected to be among the highest in Europe”.
“This provides additional portfolio cash flow supported by high-visibility revenues from wholesale contracts with global blue-chip customers and offers the potential to generate long-term value and attractive returns to shareholders,” Jemmett-Page said.
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