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Millennium invests $100m in India’s telecoms tower business

United Arab Emirates: Wednesday, January 16 - 2008 @ 16:08

Millennium Private Equity (MPE), an entity regulated by the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA), which is the private equity arm of Millennium Finance Corporation (MFC), the leading international investment bank based in the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC).

MPE committed $100m together with other highly reputable investment firms such as Temasek Holdings, Goldman Sachs, Macquarie, AIF Capital, Citigroup and India Equity Partners out of a total investment of $1bn into Bharti Infratel (Infratel), a subsidiary of Bharti Airtel Limited, the leading telecoms player in India.

ICD is the investment arm of the Government of Dubai and manages the Government’s portfolio of investments in over 40 leading local, regional and international corporations.

Bharti Infratel owns close to 20,000 sites and also has a 42% stake in Indus Towers, the recently announced joint venture between Bharti, Vodafone and Idea, which has over 70,000 sites. Bharti Infratel and Indus Towers will provide passive infrastructure services to all telecoms operators on a non-discriminatory basis.

Sharing of passive infrastructure brings benefits like capex and opex savings especially in the rural areas where the next expansion push will occur and will benefit millions of people across India. This private placement reaffirms the trust of leading global investors in Bharti and specifically the Indian telecoms sector.

Izzet Guney, head of the buyout group, said

“The high levels of Middle Eastern appetite for Asian stock is only going to increase. Over the next two or three years as the economy opens up, private equity will become a core industry, in the same way that the capital markets are developing at the moment. We believe that Bharti Infratel is the leader in the passive infrastructure sharing in the Indian telecoms industry. They bring efficiencies for operators and better quality of service and coverage for customers. We are very impressed with the management team. We are also honored to have established this investment structure with the Investment Corporation of Dubai (ICD) as our sole investor.’

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Wednesday, January 16- 2008 @ 16:08 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.

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