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Last Updated : Apr 22, 2016 07:53 AM IST | Source: PTI

ATC concludes Viom purchase for Rs 7,635 crore

With this acquisition, ATC will own 57,000 towers in the country, the company said in a statement. ATC globally has a portfolio of over 1,42,000 telecom masts.


American Tower Corporation today said it has completed the acquisition of 51 percent controlling stake in Viom Networks, one of the world's leading independent telecom mast operators with over 42,000 towers, for Rs 7,600 crore following all regulatory approvals.


With this acquisition, ATC will own 57,000 towers in the country, the company said in a statement. ATC globally has a portfolio of over 1,42,000 telecom masts.


On October 21 last year, ATC had agreed to pick 51 percent stake in Viom for Rs 7,635 crore, valuing Viom at around Rs 22,000 crore, including debt, making this largest inbound M&A deal last fiscal, and ending the over two-year long discussions that included three rounds of bidding between interested parties.

Viom has around Rs 5,100-crore debt.

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The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs had earlier this month approved the deal, making it the largest foreign direct investments in the domestic telecom sector in recent history.


Commenting on the acquisition, ATC vice-president Amit Sharma said, "The Viom acquisition makes us the leading independent telecom infrastructure provider and will allow us better serve our customers as they expand their 3G/4G network reach and capacity.


"The deal will also enable us to play a key role in providing critical communications real estate and vital passive telecom infrastructure essential to the Indian government's digital India initiative," he said.


The acquisition gives ATC option to acquire all or a portion of the remaining 49 percent stake in Viom.


Sunil Kanoria-led Srei Infra which was managing the daily operations of the company despite being a minority shareholder has received Rs 2,952 crore from the deal, the company said in a separate statement.


Kanoria, the vice-chairman and managing director of Viom and also Srei, said the sale will help him pare his debt and interest cost, and thereby improve profitability.


ATC, that has over the years largely accumulated telecom towers in the country through mergers, will fold its various arms here into Viom to create one composite entity with over 54,000 towers.


The Kolkata-based Srei group held management control with a minority stake of 18.5 per cent, the entire chunk was sold to ATC. GIC Investments of Singapore and Oman Investment Authority, both holding small single-digit stakes, too exited the company.



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First Published on Apr 21, 2016 09:04 pm
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