IHS will now operate towers on behalf of Airtel Zambia and Rwanda after the company has won another deal which involves 1100 sites from the telecommunication company.The latest deal expands IHS’s tower footprint in Africa to 21 000.
They however did not reveal the value of the transaction.
“The agreements will allow Airtel to focus on its core business and customers, enable it to deleverage through debt reduction and will significantly reduce its ongoing capital expenditure on passive infrastructure in these African markets,” said IHS.
The Zambia and Rwanda deals are subject to statutory and regulatory approvals, the company said.
“This agreement will accelerate infrastructure sharing amongst operators and benefit customers in form of affordable tariffs and wider network coverage,” said Airtel Africa CEO Christian de Faria.
News of the deals with Airtel come a month after IHS announced that it had signed agreements to raise capital of $2,6bn, a deal it billed as the largest equity raising in Africa since 2007.
The company said it was raising $2bn in new equity and a further $600m through a loan facility.
The equity investment was secured from existing and new shareholders.
IHS has raised $4,5bn since 2012, using the money for expansion in markets across Africa, including Nigeria, Cameroon, the Ivory Coast, Zambia and Rwanda.
“The new funding will be applied to acquisitions which have more than doubled the size of IHS’s tower portfolio in the last 12 months and also further new site build programmes across the IHS footprint,” the company said in a statement in November.
“It will also be utilised to continue the roll-out of leading, efficient power technologies and operational management solutions including solar systems and high-efficiency generator units. These investments will deliver greener and more efficient power systems to our tower portfolio.”