Frantic week for Cellnex. If this Monday it held its ordinary shareholders’ meeting corresponding to fiscal year 2020, the next morning it gave the green light to the fourth and largest capital increase in its history by an amount of 7,000 million euros, to finance a project portfolio of up to 18,000 million euros. At the same time, another capital increase will be carried out, through non-monetary contributions, to prepare the landing of CK Hutchinson in the shareholding, since after closing the purchase of its towers in the United Kingdom, it will be the owner of 5% of the company. Now the telecommunications infrastructure operator based in Barcelona has announced this Holy Thursday that it has closed its agreement with the operator Play to assume 60% of Iliad, the company that operates the 7,000 telecommunications sites of the Polish Telecom. For this, Cellnex has invested 800 million euros.
The remaining 40% remains in the hands of Play. This follows the model agreed in France with the sites that Free (Iliad) operates. The operation in Poland has been financed with available cash. In any case, already under the control of Cellnex, the investment of up to 1,300 million euros up to 20,230 for the deployment of up to 5,000 new towers. In addition, as is usual in this type of operation, a service provision contract has also been signed with Play for an initial period of 20 years, extendable for successive periods of 10 years.
This transaction will entail an increase in terms of sales under contract of 6,000 million for Cellnex, which if added to the rest of operations still open in Italy and the UK to complete the acquisition of the Hong Kong group’s European tower portfolio CK Hutchinson, in France with Hivory, in the Netherlands with Deutsche Telekom and the most recent with Polkomtel INfrastruktura this represents an increase in turnover of 110,000 million euros.
Specifically, at the end of February, Cellnex announced that it was acquiring 99% of Polkomtel’s tower subsidiary – Polkomtel Infrastruktura– for 1,600 million euros that operates some 7,000 towers and sites in addition to 11,300 km of fiber (backbone) and fiber to the tower (backhaul). It will also deploy in the European country until 1,500 new sites, as well as equipment for the extension of 5G for another s600 million euros in the next 10 years. Again pulling the available box.
This latest movement delves into the aspiration of the company led by the Spanish Tobías Martínez, to become what from this listed company they call“Augmented Tower”, which means a certain “return” to the origins as a spin-off of the Spanish Abertis and what Retevisión represents in Spain. In other words, to act as a comprehensive infrastructure operator capable of responding to all the connection needs of its customers.