Saudi operator Zain KSA sealed the sale of tower assets to the Saudi Public Investment Find (PIF) for SAR3.02 billion (US$803.5 million), a move to cut debt for the company.
Zawya reported, the company has so far transferred a minimum of 3,000 of the 8,089 tower assets it had sold. The remaining towers will be “transferred in batches in a period not exceeding 18 months” the operator told the Saudi Stock Exchange.
The agreement for the deal was reached last year with a PIF-backed consortium called Golden Lattice Investment Company. The deal will also see Zain KSA gain SAR2.4 billion and a 20% stake in the investment company, which also counts the PIF as shareholders (60%) and Saudi Prince Saudi bin Fahd bin Abdulaziz (10%) and Sultan Holding Company (10%).
“The reasons [for the transaction] are to maximise the benefit for its shareholders through reducing the company’s dependence on capital expenditures and separate the ownership, operation and maintenance of the towers, which will lead to strengthening the financial position of Zain KSA, focusing on investing in adjacent markets and creating value to Zain’s customers,” the stock exchange filing read.
Zain expects to generate a net profit of SAR1.1 billion from the sale.