Actis powers up digital infrastructure investing with ZAR2.3bn Octotel buyout

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Global emerging markets private equity major Actis has agreed a ZAR2.3bn ($140m) buyout of South African fibre network operator Octotel.

Actis said it had also signed agreements to acquire a non-controlling interest in RSAWEB, a leading internet service provider in the country.

Octotel, which was founded in 2016, supplies more than 175,000 premises through its fibre network.

Caxton and CTP Publishers and Printers Limited and the Pembani Remgro Infrastructure Fund will fully exit their respective positions in the two entities through the sale.

Actis partner David Cooke said, “Octotel and RSAWEB are the latest Actis investments into the high growth digital infrastructure sector.

“We have a growing portfolio of data centre investments and are delighted to now be making our first investment in the fibre sector.”

He added, “The investment opportunity is driven by the demand for reliable, high quality, high speed digital access in the home.

“We see first-hand the impact that affordable connectivity has in communities in South Africa for work, entertainment and education.”

Last month Actis announced a 75% stake in a new joint venture with GS E&C, the construction arm of GS Group, to build and operate a 21MW internet data centre in Greater Seoul at a development cost of $315m.

The firm has also created a Chinese data centre platform, Chayora Holdings, to develop hyperscale data centre facilities to serve China’s tier 1 markets.

Earlier this year Actis established a $250m pan-African data centre platform, starting with an investment in Rack Centre in Nigeria.

In May Actis sold its majority stake in Ghana’s GHL Bank, a year after it took over the investment from scandal-hit buyout house Abraaj.

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