Macquarie-led group picks stake worth $610m in Bersama Digital Infrastructure

Telecom tower. Photo by Thomas Millot on Unsplash

A consortium led by Macquarie Asset Management (MAM) has acquired a minority stake in Bersama Digital Infrastructure Asia Pte Ltd for $610 million, according to a statement by Saratoga Investama Sedaya Tbk (Saratoga) on Friday.

Macquarie Group has conducted the investment through Macquarie Asia-Pacific Infrastructure Fund 3, the statement added. 

Bersama Digital Infrastructure operates telecom towers, fibre and data centres in Southeast Asia. 

The firm is controlled by the Indonesian investment firms Provident Capital and Saratoga. Lynwood Hills Investment Solution Pte Ltd, a subsidiary of Wahana Anugerah Sejahtera controlled by Saratoga, owns a 35.17% stake in Bersama Digital. 

Recently, Bersama Digital Infrastructure acquired a 62.38% stake in Indonesia-listed tower company PT Tower Bersama Infrastructure Tbk in a transaction valued at more than $3.09 billion. It bought a 22.23% stake from Provident Capital Indonesia, another 24.97% from Wahana Anugerah Sejahtera, and the rest from individual investors.

“The acquisition of 62.38% stake in Tower Bersama is part of the restructuring strategy of Saratoga,” Galvin Arnold Caudle, director at Bersama Digital Infrastructure, said in a statement. 

Winato Kartono, one of the founders of Provident, said MAM has a strong record of investing in digital infrastructure. “We look forward to working with MAM to build upon the success of Tower Bersama to create a leading regional digital infrastructure platform. In particular, we look forward to leveraging MAM’s market-leading approach to ESG and sustainability,” he added.

Separately, Michael Soeryadjaya, president director of Saratoga, said this investment would help Saratoga Bersama Digital grow into a leading digital investment platform in the region.

Local media had previously reported that  US-based American Tower plans to buy treasury shares from Provident Capital and gradually acquire a 73.19% stake in Tower Bersama, in a move that could see Saratoga exit the company.

The tower company had posted a net profit of 1.55 trillion rupiah in 2021, up from 1 trillion rupiah in 2020. Revenue stood at 6.18 trillion rupiah ($429.02 million) in 2021, compared with 5.33 trillion rupiah ($370.02 million) in 2020.

Other tower players 

In Indonesia, there are three major tower companies — Tower Bersama, Telkom Indonesia’s arm PT Dayamitra Telekomunikasi Tbk (Mitratel) and Djarum-backed PT Sarana Menara Nusantara Tbk. While Mitratel owned 28,557 towers as of March 31, 2022, Tower Bersama and Sarana Menara owned 20,466 and 28,000, respectively, as of 2021-end.

Recently, these companies have set up new verticals, including fibre and data centres, to ramp up their digital infrastructure offerings. Many telecom companies, including listed company PT Indosat Tbk, have also followed suit.

Indosat had on Thursday announced a collaboration with Singapore-headquartered BDX Asia Data Center Holdings Pte Ltd to build a data centre company at $225.68 million. 

In October last year, Bloomberg had reported that BDX planned to acquire a 75% stake in the data centre business of Indosat in a transaction worth $200-250 million.

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