Engro signs Rs4 billion financing facility with HBL for expansion of telecom tower business
Engro Enfrashare has entered a financing arrangement amounting to PKR 4 billion with HBL, Pakistan’s largest bank, for the development of telecommunication tower sites for various mobile network operators (MNOs).
As per terms of the financing arrangement, the tenor of the financing will be seven years, including a grace period of two years.
In 2021, Engro had announced to enhance its total equity investment in the Telecom Infrastructure Vertical to PKR 21.5 billion and formed a dedicated platform for connectivity and telecom infrastructure initiatives by the name of Engro Connect (Pvt.) Limited (EConnect). EConnect is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Engro and now holds complete ownership of Engro Enfrashare (Pvt.) Limited (Enfrashare), which is Pakistan’s largest independent telecom tower company.
Engro Corporation set up the Telecom Infrastructure vertical in 2019 to accelerate the development of connectivity infrastructure in Pakistan, thereby providing an opportunity for the people to be part of the new digital era. Engro Enfrashare is engaged in the acquisition and construction of shared telecom towers, provision of telecommunication infrastructure, and related services, including state-of-the-art network monitoring solutions.
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Enfrashare has continued to expand its national footprint and achieved a scale of 2,246 operational build-to-suit (B2S), while catering to all four Mobile Network Operators in Pakistan. Enfrashare built over 75 per cent of the total new B2S towers that were deployed in the country during the year 2021. This increase in the portfolio tripled its revenue growth in comparison with last year. Further, the business has secured orders to reach a scale of more than 3,300 sites by the end of 2022.
According to Ghias Khan, President & CEO Engro Corporation, “Since starting its operations in late 2018, Engro Enfrashare has grown to become Pakistan’s largest independent telecom tower company. This arrangement with HBL will strengthen our long-standing relationship and support Engro’s vision to expand its footprint in the Telecom Infrastructure vertical to power Pakistan’s progress in the digital era.”
Commenting on the occasion, Muhammad Aurangzeb, President & CEO – HBL said, “HBL is determined to promote digitalization as we continue to play our part in the elevation of the digital infrastructure across the country. Our partnership with Engro Enfrashare is a testament to the Bank’s commitment towards the enablement of a robust and progressive telecom sector in Pakistan.”
A signing ceremony of the agreement was held at the Head Office of Engro Corporation, in the presence of Ghias Khan (President & CEO, Engro Corporation), Mazhar Hasnani (Chief Financial Officer, Engro Corporation), Faisal Sattar (CEO, Engro Enfrashare), Muhammad Aurangzeb (President & CEO, HBL), Aamir Irshad (Head Corporate, Commercial & Investment Banking, Saima Rehman (Regional Corporate Head North, HBL) and other senior representatives of both institutions.