One of Africa’s leading mobile wireless 4G LTE broadband networks Smile Telecoms Holdings Limited has announced that it has raised $365 million of debt and equity financing. This, according to the company, will be channelled into expanding its existing mobile broadband networks in the countries where it currently operates.
The company currently operates in three African countries of Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda—and plans to further take its spread to the Democratic Republic of Congo by the start of 2016.
The funding, according to company sources, comprises of $50 million of equity, which was raised from the Public Investment Corporation on behalf of the Government Employees Pension Fund, and a further $315 million from a consortium of banks in Africa.
Smile’s major goal is to become the major force when it comes to providing highly reliable data and voice services to countries where it currently exists and operates. Smile Telecoms Holdings LTD was founded in 2007, and $365 million financing is the largest capital ever raised by a telecom firm in Africa.
“We are excited our investment in Smile Telecoms as it provides us with an opportunity to accelerate and realise our mandate to invest in the rest of the African continent,” said Dr Daniel Matjila, the Chief Executive of the PIC. “Telecommunications is one of the key drivers for economic growth and its importance cannot be overemphasised.”