German giant Deutsche Telekom (DT) and multinational towerco Cellnex Telecom have agreed to combine their respective tower infrastructure businesses in the Netherlands and also become anchor investors in a newly established Digital Infrastructure Vehicle (DIV), an investment fund focused on European digital infrastructure.
In a first step DT is transferring its Dutch tower division T-Mobile Infra to the independently managed fund DIV. DT will receive a EUR250 million (USD303 million) cash payment via the transaction and a shareholding in DIV in exchange for the T-Mobile Infra business. This translates into a capital commitment from DT of around EUR400 million to the fund. Cellnex has agreed to commit EUR200 million of capital to DIV.
In a second step, DIV will contribute the received T-Mobile Infra business to Cellnex NL. In return, DIV receives an economic interest of approximately 38% in the enlarged Cellnex NL.
In addition to anchor investors DT and Cellnex, DIV will be open to institutional investors. DT intends to hold a limited partner stake of around 25% in the fund after the envisaged third-party investments. DIV will focus on promoting digital infrastructure investments across Europe into fibre, towers and data centres.
The merger creates what the companies say is the leading independent telecommunications tower company in the Netherlands. T-Mobile Infra has 3,150 towers and rooftop sites while Cellnex NL owns 984 cell sites. The enlarged Dutch company, with 4,310 sites including planned new build of 180 sites, will continue to provide cellco T-Mobile Netherlands with full access to all infrastructure through a long-term service agreement.