Convergence Partners recently signed an agreement with Google, International Finance Corporation (IFC) and Mitsui & Co., Ltd. (Mitsui) to invest in CSquared, a broadband infrastructure company headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya. The partners have agreed to invest up to US$100mn for the existing metro fibre network operations in Uganda and Ghana, plus new markets in the future. Convergence Partners’ investment will be housed in Convergence Partners Communications Infrastructure Fund (CPCIF), the only infrastructure fund dedicated solely to information and communications technology in Africa. The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions.
CSquared, initially started by Google as Project Link, is a carrier-neutral open access, wholesale provider of high-speed metro fibre throughout sub-Saharan Africa. It currently has high quality fibre networks in Uganda (800kms in Kampala and Entebbe) and Ghana (840kms in Accra, Tema and Kumasi). The introduction of the new partners will accelerate growth of the existing operations and plans for expansion into further markets.
“CSquared is a perfect fit with Convergence Partners’ vision for expanding the reach of quality, affordable broadband to Africa. Its disruptive model of deploying and operating infrastructure on an open access, shared basis will be instrumental in delivering commercial and developmental benefits through the unlocking of pervasive broadband access. The impact of broadband access as a catalyst for economic development is undeniable and well documented.” says Andile Ngcaba, Chairman of Convergence Partners.
He adds that the four-way partnership between Convergence Partners, Google, IFC and Mitsui represents like-minded investors and players with capability and experience in the ICT infrastructure space.
Marian Croak, Vice-President at Google said, “We believe that together under CSquared, we can get more done to roll-out and operate affordable, high-speed, and reliable infrastructure to expand internet access in Africa. Project Link has demonstrated the impact of shared wholesale infrastructure, and we’re excited to see CSquared bring more infrastructure to more service providers and their customers.”
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Notes to Editors
About Convergence Partners
Convergence Partners is a pan-African ICT–focused private equity player, delivering enhanced investment returns while underpinning Continental development. Convergence Partners has a proven track record of developing new investment opportunities as well as actively adding value to investments across the life cycle of ICT assets. As impact investors, Convergence Partners brings its skills, experience and capital to accelerate ICT infrastructure development on the Continent, focusing on initiatives that increase availability of communications, broadband services and new technology offerings to the people of Africa. For more information, visit: http://www.convergencepartners.com/
CSquared is a technology company, making commercially driven investments into broadband-enabling infrastructure throughout Africa. When it comes to Internet access, a basic connection is useful — but it is abundant, affordable broadband that can transform communities and help people make the most of opportunities online. By investing in internet infrastructure and making it available to local ISPs and MNOs, CSquared helps bring high-quality broadband access to Africa’s large cities.
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