British pure fibre broadband provider CityFibre has announced that it has secured a debt package totalling GBP4.9 billion (USD6.1 billion), comprising committed facilities of GBP3.9 billion and an accordion facility of GBP1.0 billion. According to the company, the new facilities will fully finance its rollout of fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) technology, while also enabling ‘upweighted participation in BDUK’s Project Gigabit rural programme’.
With CityFibre claiming the debt facilities form one of the largest single financings dedicated to full fibre deployment across Europe, it noted that the debt raise had been underwritten by NatWest, Societe Generale, Credit Agricole CIB, BBVA, Intesa Sanpaolo, ING and SEB. Alongside these financial institutions, CityFibre confirmed that ‘ABN AMRO, Lloyds Bank and the pensions and M&G Investments, the international asset manager, [were] joining as core lenders’. Also participating as a core lender is the recently established UK Infrastructure Bank (UKIB), a development which CityFibre claimed recognised its ‘contribution to critical national infrastructure deployment and the Government’s levelling up programme’.
This latest financing comes in the wake of GBP1.125 billion in equity investments that CityFibre has closed in the last ten months from two new investors, Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala Investment Company (Mubadala) and Interogo Holding, as well as from existing investors Antin Infrastructure Partners and the Infrastructure business within Goldman Sachs Asset Management. Combined, these debt and equity funds will reportedly fully finance the completion of CityFibre’s rollout to eight million homes, 800,000 businesses, 400,000 public sector sites and 250,000 5G access points.