American Tower to purchase 51% stake in Viom Networks
American Tower is to purchase a 51% stake in India’s Viom Networks for a cash deal valued at $1.2 billion.
The acquisition will enable American Tower to expand its footprint, adding 42,000 mobile towers from Viom Networks to its existing portfolio of 14,000 towers in India.
“With a population of nearly 1.3 billion people, rapidly growing smartphone penetration and limited fixed line infrastructure, India’s vibrant wireless industry is poised for a sustained period of network investment,” said James D. Taiclet, CEO of American Tower.
Upon completion of the deal, Viom’s majority owner Tata Teleservices will decrease its stake from 54% to 32% while Srei Infrastructure Finance, which owns approximately 18% of Viom, will exit.
American Tower may be required to purchase all or part of the remaining 49% in Viom, according to the company.
Separately, Reliance Communications, owned by Anil Ambani, is also exploring options to sell a stake in its tower business. The billionaire said he plans to sell the towers in the next two months and added that American Tower was among the interested parties.