WIOCC raises $200m to expand African connectivity

WIOCC raises $200m to expand African connectivity

Mauritius-based West Indian Ocean Cable Company (WIOCC), has announced a $200 million debt and equity capital raise which the company says will be used to expand its connectivity within Africa and internationally.

The African telecom infrastructure company announced in a press release that it had completed a $200 million debt and equity capital raise. As well as expanding subsea and terrestrial fiber investments, the money will be used to launch a network of pan-African data centers targeting cloud and wholesale providers through a newly-created WIOCC Group company called Open Access Data Centres (OADC).

First-phase locations for OADC will house carrier-neutral submarine cable landings in Lagos, Nigeria; Durban, South Africa; and Mogadishu, Somalia. Construction and fit-out is underway in Lagos and Durban, with both to be launched early in 2022, whilst the Mogadishu data center will be ready before the end of 2022.

WIOCC said further phases of deployment will deliver more than 20 new data centers in strategic locations throughout the continent, focusing on major connectivity hubs in each country.

" Strategic investments in the new Equiano and 2Africa international subsea systems will augment and complement WIOCC’s existing core network infrastructure, cost-effectively adding multi-Terabits (Tbps) of capacity and significantly increasing its options for delivering the high-availability solutions demanded in markets across Africa. WIOCC’s terrestrial strategy, which includes deployment of metro and national networks in key locations, will be extended to include new countries and metropolitan areas, increasing its portfolio of end-to-end solutions for clients across Africa," said the release.

WIOCC raised equity capital from CAPE IV, a fund managed by the leading African-focused private equity fund manager, African Capital Alliance (ACA).

WIOCC’s debt facility was provided by the International Finance Corporation, Proparco and Emerging Africa Infrastructure Fund managed by Ninety One (formerly Investec Asset Management). Verdant Capital acted as a financial advisor to WIOCC for the capital increase.

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