TAWAL secures $1.42bn funding for European tower asset acquisition

By Shilpa Annie Joseph, Official Reporter
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PIF and stc Group form telecom tower company
Rep. Image | Courtesy: David ROUMANET @ Pixabay

Saudi Telecom Company (stc) has stated its information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure subsidiary, TAWAL has raised $1.42 billion in Islamic financing in order to fund the acquisition of the mobile telecommunications infrastructure unit of United Group in Bulgaria, Croatia, and Slovenia.

Earlier this year, TAWAL agreed to buy tower infrastructure worth 1.22 billion euros ($1.34 billion) from United Group in its first foray into Europe’s telecoms market. It was agreed that the transaction cash consideration would be based on the agreed terms of the SPA in relation to debt, cash, and working capital.

stc said in a statement that “TAWAL has received all the necessary approvals and formally completed its acquisition on 24-8-2023.” After the closing of this transaction, TAWAL’s towers portfolio under its ownership and management has reached more than 21,000 towers across 5 countries. This acquisition represents a unique addition to stc’s complete digital ecosystem.

The financial impact will appear in the consolidated financial statements for the third quarter of 2023. The agreement supports stc Group’s ambitious strategy to expand its international footprint in key markets with significant growth potential. 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.

“Saudi National Bank, the kingdom’s biggest lender contributed $1.02 billion, of which $300 million was a bridge loan. Dubai Islamic Bank and First Abu Dhabi Bank contributed $250 million and $150 million respectively,” as per the statement.

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