Vodafone sells 18.5% stake in Indus Towers

Vodafone sells 18.5% stake in Indus Towers

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Vodafone has sold 18.5% of its 21.5% stake in Indian towerco Indus Towers.

The UK based MNO had only planned to sell 10% of its stake, but due to high investor demand nearly doubled the number of shares it has relinquished.

Bharti Airtel, an Indian MNO, has increased its stake to 50%, picking up 1% of the shares.

The deal means that Vodafone now only has a 3.1% stake in Indus Towers, although Vodafone Idea, which was formed through the merger of Vodafone India and Idea Cellular in 2020 does still retain a share as well.

Indus Towers also owns a portion of Vodafone Idea, in a deal whereby it received shares in exchange for unpaid dues for tenancies on its towers.

Private Equity fund KKR and Canadian pension fund CPPIB both sold their stakes in Indus Towers in February.

Vodafone said it sold 484.7 million Indus shares at 310-341 rupees per share, raising 153 billion rupees, or 1.7 billion euros, in gross proceeds that it will use to repay debt.

Vodafone’s 18% represents 484.7 million shares. The sale was arranged through an accelerated book-build offering, known as a placing.

The Placing raised INR 153.0 billion (€1.7 billion) in gross proceeds which will be used to substantially repay Vodafone’s existing lenders in relation to the outstanding bank borrowings of €1.8 billion secured against Vodafone’s Indian assets.

Indus Towers is recognised as the largest towerco in Inida, but earlier this year Brookfield, which owns the second largest towerco Summit Digitel, agreed to acquire American Towers Indian assets.

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