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Helios Towers Africa Raises $630 Million to Fund Towers Expansion

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Helios Towers Africa has raised USD630 million in new equity resources from existing and new shareholders. The news comes as the company signed a deal to buy 3,100 towers from Bharti Airtel is a deal reputedly worth around USD2 billion.

Existing shareholders including: Quantum Strategic Partners, Helios Investment Partners, Albright Capital Management, RIT Capital Partners and the International Finance Corporation (IFC), all added to their current stakes and are now joined by new shareholders Providence Equity Partners and IFC African, Latin American, and Caribbean Fund.

HTA also expects to complete negotiations shortly on new and extended debt facilities of over USD350 million with a strong syndicate of international and local lending institutions.

Following this latest injection of capital into the business, HTA will have raised over $1.8 billion in external financing since inception in late 2009 to fund acquisitions and organic growth.

HTA says that tere is a need for 100,000 towers in Africa to merely satisfy demand for 2G coverage and associated capacity demand over the next five years. This towers requirement is underpinned further by the growing demand for 3G and 4G data, which is driving the need for significant additional infrastructure capacity and in-fill across the continent.

As a result of the recently announced transaction with Bharti Airtel, HTA is, on an owned-tower basis, the largest tower company in Africa, with over 7,800 owned towers.

Chuck Green, Chief Executive Officer of HTA, said: "We are delighted to have received this vote of confidence in our strategy and the growth opportunity available, from both our existing investors and new supporters. The market opportunity is as compelling as ever and this new capital injection will help us to consolidate our pan-African vision and market leading position, even further. We now have over 7,800 owned towers in Africa and the financial firepower to enter more new markets."

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