The acquisition of a stake in GlobalConnect by Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund Mubadala marks a deepening of its exposure to European telecoms following a US$1 billion investment in CityFibre, Britain's biggest independent provider of full-fibre broadband infrastructure.
The minority stake was acquired from EQT Group Infrastructure III and IV funds. GlobalConnect is a fiber-based data communication and data center services provider to enterprises, public institutions, and consumers in Northern Europe, based in Sweden. EQT Infrastructure has over the years invested in GlobalConnect’s Fiber-to-the-Home deployment to support digital inclusion and bridging the divide between urban and rural regions.
Khaled Abdulla Al Qubaisi, Chief Executive Officer, Real Estate and Infrastructure Investments at Mubadala, said, “Investing in digital infrastructure allows us to achieve both these goals. We look forward to working with GlobalConnect and EQT to capitalize on growth opportunities in data center and Fiber-to-the-Home assets, and to support Europe’s digital infrastructure development, a vital enabler of digital inclusion and socioeconomic progress.”
Created by EQT in 2019, GlobalConnect is a fiber-based data communication and data centre services provider to enterprises, public institutions and consumers in Northern Europe. EQT claims that GlobalConnect’s infrastructure currently carries more than 50% of all internet traffic generated in the Nordics across its network of 150,000km of fiber infrastructure and 35,000 sq metres of data center space.
In March, Mubadala announced it would invest an additional GBP300 million into CityFibre, the UK's biggest independent provider of full-fibre broadband infrastructure.It took the total amount of equity raised by CityFibre to more than GBP1.4 billion in just six months, in what is the UK’s largest ever capital-raising for broadband infrastructure. Mubadala, which acquired the stake through its digital infrastructure investments team, made an initial commitment of GBP500 million as part of a broader capital-raising last September. The funding was set to be used to enable the company's participation in the 'Project Gigabit' rural program being overseen by Building Digital UK.
CityFibre is the largest of the alternative network providers vying to swallow a large share of the market for telecoms infrastructure across the country. It aims to target the provision of superfast broadband to eight million homes by 2025 in a GBP4 billion program.