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Equinix buys West Africa’s MainOne in $320m deal expanding into the continent for the first time

MainOne’s acquired facilities generate approximately $60 million annualised (Q2'21LQA) revenue with a purchase multiple of approximately 14x EBITDA.

By João Marques Lima

Co-founder and Editor, The Tech Capital

3 Mins

December 07, 2021 | 2:34 PM GMT

Equinix buys West Africa’s MainOne in $320m deal expanding into the continent for the first time

MainOne’s CEO Funke Opeke. Source: MainOne

Equinix, Inc. (Nasdaq: EQIX) said it will expand into the African continent for the first time through acquiring West African data centre operator MainOne.

The transaction has an enterprise value of US$320 million and is expected to be AFFO accretive upon close, excluding integration costs.

The acquisition is expected to close Q1 of 2022, subject to the satisfaction of customary closing conditions including the requisite regulatory approvals.

MainOne’s portfolio serves over 800 customers from three operational data centres in Nigeria, Ghana, and Côte d’Ivoire, with an additional facility under construction expected to open in Q1 2022.

These facilities will add more than 64,000 gross square feet of space to Platform Equinix, in addition to 570,000 square feet of land for future expansions.

The facilities generate approximately $60 million annualised (Q2’21LQA) revenue with a purchase multiple of approximately 14x EBITDA.

The company also owns a submarine network extending 7,000 kilometres from Portugal to Lagos, Accra and along the west African coast, with landing stations in Nigeria, Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire.

In addition, the portfolio includes a terrestrial network of more than 1,200 kilometres of reliable terrestrial fibre in Lagos, Edo and Ogun States. Connectivity to terrestrial sites extends across 65 PoPs (points of presence) in cities across Portugal, Nigeria, Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire.

Charles Meyers, President and CEO, Equinix, said: “The acquisition of MainOne will represent a critical point of entry for Platform Equinix into the expansive and rapidly growing African market. MainOne’s leading interconnection position and experienced management team represent critical assets in our aspirations to be the leading neutral provider of digital infrastructure in Africa.

“Growth of data consumption in Africa is amongst the fastest in the world, and our customers are looking for a trusted partner to pursue the opportunities presented by broad mobile adoption and greater connectivity across the region.”

Under the terms of the transaction, the management team, including MainOne’s CEO Funke Opeke, will continue to serve in their respective roles.

Opeke said: “Equinix will accelerate our long-term vision to grow digital infrastructure investments across Africa. I thank our founding shareholders led by Mr. Fola Adeola, MainStreet Technologies, AFC, PAIDF, FBN, Polaris and AfDB for investing in the MainOne vision to bridge the Digital Divide in Africa.

“With similar values and culture to what we have jointly built in twelve years, Equinix is the preferred partner for our growth journey. The MainOne team is excited about the partnership created through the acquisition, and we look forward to building our next chapter together.”

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João Marques Lima

Co-founder and Editor, The Tech Capital

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