Sunday, 20 August 2017

Bharti offloads INR25.7bn Infratel stake

By Nick Wood, Total Telecom
Wednesday 09 August 17

Indian operator to use proceeds from share sale to pay down debt.

Bharti Airtel this week sold a 3.65% stake in its towers business Bharti Infratel, raising 25.7 billion rupees (€343.32 million). In a statement on Tuesday…

Bharti Airtel this week sold a 3.65% stake in its towers business Bharti Infratel, raising 25.7 billion rupees (€343.32 million).

In a statement on Tuesday, the Indian operator said it will use the proceeds to pay down debt. Bharti's net debt stood at INR878.4 billion (€11.73 billion) at the end of June.

"The allocation was done to global tower company investors, fund managers and long-only funds, including many repeat investors," Bharti Airtel said.

In March, the company offloaded a 10.3% stake in Bharti Infratel to a consortium of funds advised by KKR and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) for INR61.93 billion.

That deal came a week after Bharti Airtel transferred a 21.63% directly-held stake in Infratel to its wholly-owned subsidiary, Nettle Infrastructure Investments.

Tuesday's deal reduces Bharti's position in Infratel to 58% from just under 61.7%.

Earlier in March, Bharti said it planned to maintain a controlling stake in Infratel. If that is still the case, then there won't be many more transactions in the pipeline.

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