Stc Group enters into Europe through its infrastructure arm ‘TAWAL’

By Shilpa Annie Joseph, Official Reporter
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Stc Group, an engine of digital transformation in the MENA region, announced that its ICT infrastructure subsidiary, TAWAL has signed an agreement in order to acquire United Group’s telecommunications tower assets.

The agreement, valued at $1.3 billion (EUR 1.220 billion), supports stc Group’s ambitious strategy to expand its international footprint in key markets with significant growth potential.

According to the statement, “Marking TAWAL’s first step in Europe, this move represents a major milestone in its international expansion journey and stc Group’s growth ambitions which have been actively growing in the ICT adjacencies including recent investments in ICT, IoT, Cloud, Cybersecurity, Fintech and digital entertainment through its subsidiaries.”

Following the completion of the acquisition, TAWAL will own and operate more than 4,800 sites across Bulgaria, Croatia, and Slovenia, providing the full range of passive infrastructure services.

Olayan AlWetaid
Olayan AlWetaid
Group CEO

“Our agreement with United Group represents an exciting new chapter for TAWAL and the wider stc Group. The agreement is a significant milestone in our ambitious growth strategy and the expansion of our international footprint. We are already leading the transformation of Saudi Arabia’s digital capabilities and this transaction reinforces our commitment to investing in best-in-class technology and infrastructure to lead the way in enabling the world to connect.”

The transaction is subject to regulatory approval from the relevant authorities in Bulgaria and Slovenia. Upon completion, TAWAL’s operations in the European market will be rebranded as “TAWAL Europe” and will serve as TAWAL’s platform for any future expansion in Europe.

As part of the 20-year master services agreement with United Group, TAWAL will deploy over 2,000 additional sharable sites, while co-location relationships with other mobile network operators will be maintained and expanded, enabling stc Group to drive digital transformation by providing world-class connectivity, the company said.

Mr. Mohammed Alhakbani, Chief Executive Officer, TAWAL, stated that, “We are delighted to partner with United Group in our first investment in the European market. The partnership supports our goal to continue to provide innovative and efficient ICT infrastructure solutions to our partners and deliver the quality of services we are renowned for.”

TAWAL currently owns a portfolio of over 16,000 telecom towers. The company is actively supporting digital transformation plans in Saudi Arabia, expanding its reach across new cities and rural areas in the Kingdom and actively rolling out smart-city-ready technologies such as camouflage telecom towers, smart poles capable of hosting 5G and IoT applications, in-building solutions, and small cells.

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