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PCCW, DigitalBridge agree on $750m data centre sale

PCCW will merge colocation brands before handing over assets to the New York-listed infrastructure REIT.

By João Marques Lima

Founder and Editor, The Tech Capital

3 Mins

July 26, 2021 | 10:21 AM BST

PCCW, DigitalBridge agree on $750m data centre sale

Marc C. Ganzi is President and Chief Executive Officer of DigitalBridge. Source: DigitalBridge

Hong Kong-based telecoms PCCW (HKG: 0008) has agreed on the sale of its data centre units to investment vehicle DigitalBridge Group Inc. (NYSE: DBRG).

The sale amounts to US$750 million, $150 million higher than original rumours suggested earlier last week but $250 million below earlier reports.

PCCW said it aims to cash in gains of at least $180 million with the transaction to aid in streamlining its core telecom service businesses including investments in financial services, share buyback programs, debt repayment, and other general corporate purposes.

The company manages two data centre businesses in Hong Kong and Malaysia through two units, PCCW Powerbase Data Center Services HK Ltd (Powerbase) and DC Malaysia.

The two brands will be consolidated into one before behind handed over to DigitalBridge.

Marc Ganzi, President and CEO of DigitalBridge, said: “As an experienced investor in the global data center sector, DigitalBridge’s expertise investing in, building, and operating data centers to the highest standards aligns perfectly with PCCW DC’s next stage of development.

“They are already a leading operator in the region and are poised for significant growth, with a strong development pipeline and considerable expansion capacity. This is a terrific platform for DigitalBridge to expand its regional presence while supporting a strong management team focused on serving many of the same hyperscale and large enterprise customers that DigitalBridge works with on a global basis.”

The transaction, which remains subject to customary closing conditions, is expected to close during the fourth quarter of 2021.

PCCW shares were trading on 1.69% growth on the back of the news. DigitalBridge’s shares remained unaltered from Friday closing at the time of writing.

Powerbase’s portfolio includes a 16-floor purpose-built facility with more than 202,000 sq ft of total floor space located in the Ting Industrial Central, Hong Kong.

DC Malaysia is made of one facility in Cyberjaya which was acquired from MyTelehaus in late 2020. The CJ1 site has a total power capacity of 2.23MW powering three levels of data floors covering 26,000 sq ft. PCCW is also in the process of expanding the campus, with the addition a second facility named CJ2 due to open in 2022.

DigitalBridge, recently rebranded and combined the Digital Colony and Colony Capital brands, manages today $32 billion in assets within digital infrastructure, including towers, data centres, fibre, small cells, and edge infrastructure.

The group, which is structured as a REIT, is scheduled to release its second-quarter 2021 financial results before the market opens on Thursday, August 5, 2021.

The company has recently also closed two securitised financing note issuances totalling $500 million and launched the formation EdgePoint Infrastructure, a wireless towers platform focused on the high-growth markets of Southeast Asia.

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João Marques Lima

Founder and Editor, The Tech Capital

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