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Thursday, August 11, 2022

InfraCredit’s Guarantee Supports Pan African Towers’ Issuance of N10bn Infrastructure Bonds Due 2032

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InfraCredit, a ‘AAA’-rated specialized infrastructure credit guarantee institution, is pleased to announce its guarantee of PAT Digital Infra Fund SPV PLC’s N10.0 billion 10-Year Series I Senior Guaranteed Fixed Rate Infrastructure Bonds Due 2032 (the “PAT Series I Bonds” or “Bonds”) under the N50 billion Debt Issuance Programme.

PAT Digital Infra Fund SPV PLC is a special purpose funding vehicle established by Pan African Towers Limited (PAT) as part of the company’s capital-raising plan.

PAT is a digital telecommunications infrastructure company and wireless service facilitator, offering colocation and infrastructure sharing services to mobile network operators and internet service providers.

PAT’s remarkable growth over the past four years of operation has been underpinned by its cost efficiency leadership and service quality philosophy.

With over 1,000 long lease tenancy contracts from leading telecommunications service providers, especially tier-1 players like MTN, Airtel and 9mobile, PAT is the third largest and the only major local infrastructure service provider and wireless service facilitator in the Nigerian telecommunications subsector.

PAT is a first-time issuer in the debt capital markets. With the support of InfraCredit’s guarantee, the PAT Series I Bonds were accorded a ‘AAA’ long term credit rating by Agusto and Co. and GCR, reflecting the high degree of creditworthiness and the robust quality of the Bonds.

The Bond issue was oversubscribed by 127% by ten institutional investors, including the domestic pension funds and insurance companies.

The Bond proceeds will be used to finance the roll-out of new environmentally friendly tower sites to enhance telecommunication coverage and service quality, especially in underserved communities.

Additionally, PAT aims to apply some of the proceeds towards reducing carbon footprint in the sector by swapping out diesel generators with renewable energy sources.

The Bonds were priced off the yield on the comparable FGN Sovereign Bonds, providing a unique opportunity for pension fund managers to diversify their portfolios with “AAA”-rated, risk-adjusted return yielding assets.

In a statement, the Chairman of Pan African Towers Limited, Mr. Wole Adeleke stated:

“PAT’s ambition is to be the number 1 indigenous wholly owned digital telecommunications infrastructure and wireless service facilitator in Nigeria. In the last 3 years that we commenced business, we have demonstrated capacity to achieve faster growth in the number of our rental assets, with solid top and bottom-line performance supported by long-term contracts with leading market leaders in mobile telecommunication and internet service in Nigeria. And we are pleased that InfraCredit was able to provide full credit enhancement for this debut Bond Issuance programme. We are very passionate about the environment and part of the proceeds from the Bond Issue will be utilized to green our network of Build-to-Suite Towers to reduce carbon emission; an objective that aligns with that of our major customers.”

According to the Chief Executive Officer of InfraCredit, Chinua Azubike, “We are pleased to have supported Pan African Towers, Nigeria’s fast growing indigenous digital infrastructure service provider’s first naira issuance in the local debt capital markets for expansion and growth that will also reduce its carbon emissions. We are also proud to support the ambitions of Nigeria’s National Development Plan to facilitate the formation of private capital investments in digital infrastructure that will accelerate job creation and local economic growth. The need for digital connectivity is more essential than ever as Nigeria accounts for over 27% of all internet usage in Africa, and much of this internet access are powered by telecommunication infrastructure service providers like PAT. This transaction strongly demonstrates the especially important role of the local pension funds in the allocation of long-term domestic credit to the private sector for sustainable development.”

FCMB Capital Markets Limited acted as Lead Issuing House/Bookrunner and Chapel Hill Denham Advisory Limited, FSL Securities Limited and Vetiva Capital Management Limited acted as Joint Issuing Houses and Bookrunners for the transaction.

About InfraCredit

InfraCredit is a ‘AAA’ rated specialised infrastructure credit guarantee institution backed by the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority, GuarantCo (a Private Infrastructure Development Group company), KfW Development Bank, Africa Finance Corporation, InfraCo Africa and African Development Bank, to provide local currency guarantees and mobilize long term debt financing for infrastructure in Nigeria.

InfraCredit’s guarantees act as a catalyst to attract domestic credit from pension funds, insurance firms and other long-term investors into credit-worthy infrastructure projects, thereby deepening the Nigerian debt capital markets. InfraCredit operates on a commercial basis with a developmental role and benefits from private sector governance.

InfraCredit maintains the highest domestic financial strength ratings accorded to any financial institution by Agusto and Co. and Global Credit Ratings Co., two of the major domestic credit rating agencies. For more information please visit www.infracredit.ng and follow us on Linkedin and Twitter.

About Pan African Towers Limited

Pan African Towers Limited (PAT) was licensed 2017 by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to operate as a telecommunications colocation and infrastructure sharing service provider.

The company commenced operations in 2018. Growing its share of the market steadily, PAT now ranks as the third largest infrastructure sharing service provider in Nigeria’s telecommunication sub-sector, with over 1,000 long term tenancy contract leases of its active towers spread across the six geopolitical zones in Nigeria.

With a colocation ratio of 1.62x, PAT has a strong trajectory of operational excellence and financial performance. For more information, please visit https://panafricantower-ng.com/our-mission/.

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