KWAP takes US$100 mil stake in Axiata’s telco infra biz

kwap-axiataKUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s US$28 billion (RM123.4) Retirement Fund Incorporated (KWAP) has picked a US$100 million stake in edotco, the telecommunications infrastructure services unit of mobile network operator Axiata Group Bhd.

The investment is an add-on to the US$600 million being raised by edotco through an equity private placement, announced in December, from sovereign wealth fund Khazanah Nasional Bhd and Innovation Network Corp of Japan (INCJ).

The upsized placement exercise involves a final allocation of US$400 million and US$100 million worth of primary shares to INCJ and KWAP, respectively, and another US$200 million of secondary shares allocated to Khazanah Nasional, Axiata said in a statement.

At completion, the three investors will collectively own 37.6% of edotco while Axiata will remain the majority shareholder with a 62.4% stake.

KWAP’s investment was concluded based on the same equity valuation in December, of close to US$1.5 billion and an enterprise value to 2016 financial year earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation multiple of 12.5 times. That multiple is comparable to regional peers, Axiata said.

J P Morgan is the sole placement agent in this transaction.

Edotco operates and manages more than 25,000 telecom towers across Malaysia, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Cambodia and Sri Lanka, directly operating 17,000 of the towers.