African Rainbow Capital (ARC), a Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) investment company chaired by billionaire Patrice Motsepe, has acquired a 20% stake in 4G LTE operator Rain (previously Multisource/WBS Group) for an undisclosed sum. Rain chairman Paul Harris said: ‘We are delighted to partner with African Rainbow Capital and look forward to the strategic value they bring to the team. In addition, they enhance our already significant BEE ownership credentials.’ Rain, which is aiming to commercially introduce a nationwide time division duplex LTE-Advanced (TD-LTE-A) network using carrier aggregation (CA) in the 1800MHz and 2600MHz bands in the next few months, has deployed 1,500 LTE-A sites to date, and is on track to meet its target of 2,000 4G sites by the end of the year.
The new deal follows the March 2016 announcement that ARC secured an 18.1% minority stake in South African operator MetroFibre Networx (MFN) – which provides fibre-based services with maximum downlink speeds of 1Gbps in the Gauteng province – for an undisclosed sum. MFN is targeting 50,000 live FTTH connections by December 2018.