EQT and Omers to acquire Deutsche Glasfaser

EQT and Omers to acquire Deutsche Glasfaser

10 February 2020 | Natalie Bannerman

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EQT Infrastructure and Omers Infrastructure have entered an agreement to jointly acquire Deutsche Glasfaser from KKR Infrastructure and Reggeborgh.

Through this acquisition Deutsche Glasfaser will be combined with EQT Infrastructure IV portfolio company inexio for create a top FTTH player and telco in Germany.

“We are excited to welcome EQT and Omers as our new owners and we are fully aligned to further develop Germany’s digital infrastructure,” said Uwe Nickl (pictured), chief executive of Deutsche Glasfaser. “With the industry experience and financial support from EQT and Omers, Deutsche Glasfaser is well-positioned to take the next step on our growth journey and accelerate the fibre roll-out across Germany. On top, we as a management team are excited to join forces with inexio, which will help us to combine our highly complementary skill-sets and to further accelerate our growth.”

Given the low FTTH penetration in the country, significant investment is required over the coming years. Leveraging EQT and Omer’s expertise in the sector and strong financial support, the combined group plans to invest over €7 billion over the next few years. This all supports the government’s plant to provide nation-wide gigabit convergent internet infrastructure by 2025.

“We have followed Deutsche Glasfaser for some time and are impressed with Uwe Nickl’s and his management team’s commitment to digitising Germany,” said Matthias Fackler, partner at EQT Partners. “EQT has a long history of developing strong fibre companies and looks forward to leveraging this experience, and together with OMERS, contribute to the German government’s plan to deliver nationwide gigabit Internet access by 2025. Deutsche Glasfaser and inexio combined will play a vital role in enabling digital inclusion and sustainable economic growth.”

Comprised of 30,00km of fibre-optic infrastructure, Deutsche Glasfaser’s network delivers high-speed internet access to more than 600.000 households and 5,000 businesses rural and sub-urban communities in Germany.

“We are pleased to announce our partnership with EQT to accelerate the fibre roll-out in Germany’s rural communities,” added Marco Pugliese, managing director at Omers Infrastructure. “Omers is eager to support Deutsche Glasfaser’s and inexio’s ambitious growth plans. This investment follows Omers recent investment to deploy FTTH to more than 8 million homes in France and meets Omers Infrastructure’s strong desire to seek exposure to essential digital infrastructure in high quality jurisdictions.”

Deutsche Glasfaser’s management team says that it plans to continue the company’s rapid growth with the large-scale deployment of fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) in rural Germany.

“The inexio management team is looking forward to the opportunity of building a leading FTTH provider in Germany with the support of EQT and Omers, alongside our fellow colleagues at Deutsche Glasfaser,” said David Zimmer, chief executive of inexio.

The deal in expected to close in Q2 of 2020, subject to the standard regulatory approvals.