i3 Broadband

Seaport Capital sells i3 Broadband to Kuwaiti-owned investor

15 September 2020 | Melanie Mingas

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Illinois-based FTTH operator i3 Broadband has been sold to Wren House Infrastructure Management, a subsidiary of the Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA), for an undisclosed sum.

Previously owned by Seaport Capital and Countrywide Broadband, i3 provides gigabit-speed broadband, as well as video and voice services, to residential and commercial customers in Central Illinois, and markets in the East Bay of Rhode Island.

Scott McCormack, a partner at Seaport Capital, said: “We want to thank the entire i3 team and wish the company continued success in the future with their new partner, Wren House.”

The investment from Wren House is intended to support i3’s “continued growth in existing markets”, in addition to the buildout of new communities in Illinois and surrounding states. And it’s far from the first international telco investment from a GCC state in recent months.

Over the last quarter, sovereign wealth funds in the UAE and Saudi Arabi have backed India’s Jio Platforms and Qatar has also reportedly considered a stake in the firm’s fibre assets.

Wren House CEO Hakim Drissi, said: “i3 is perfectly positioned to meet the growing demand for reliable, high-speed connectivity to homes and businesses. i3 has built an impressive fibre network and cultivated strong customer relationships throughout their local markets. We are excited to partner with i3's exceptional management team to accelerate the company's growth, while continuing to deliver category-leading service to i3's communities.”

Wren has previously backed Associated British Ports (ABP), London City Airport, Thames Water and Turkish energy supplier Zorlu. Wren House is also active in midstream, digital infrastructure,  including towers, fibre and cloud, healthcare and education infrastructure.

Dan Kennedy, CEO of i3 Broadband, added: “i3 is committed to providing local communities with access to the most reliable, high-speed broadband connectivity available. These services are more critical than ever, allowing residents to easily e-learn and work-from-home, and communities to grow.  Wren House's investment will allow us to expand our network and enhance our services, all while remaining committed to our customer-first culture.