Japanese conglomerate Mitsui & Co Ltd has made a strategic minority investment in Malaysia’s Axiata Digital, the digital services arm of telecommunications giant Axiata Group, according to a statement on Friday.
Axiata Digital, which was started in 2013 to help the telco business undergo digital transformation via investments in new age business, said Mitsui’s investment establishes a pre-money enterprise value of $500 million for its core digital businesses.
Financial details of Mitsui’s investment were not disclosed but Axiata Digital said the Japanese conglomerate will become a strategic shareholder and business partner in its core business verticals.
“The funds raised will be earmarked to fuel the next phase of growth of Axiata Digital’s core businesses,” the company said.
The company’s core businesses include Boost, an e-wallet service in Malaysia; ada (analytics.data.advertising), the largest independent digital agency in the region; and Apigate, an emerging global API platform provider.
Last week, Axiata Digital entered into an agreement to sell its digital ventures portfolio at a valuation of $140 million to Singapore investment fund Pegasus 7 Ventures.
Axiata Digital was initially established to support the increasingly digital lifestyle of Axiata consumers and grew to a portfolio of 30 brands. By 2017, the firm began to focus on being an operator of strategic digital businesses.
The investment into Axiata Digital is not the first collaboration between Axiata and Mitsui. According to Masahiro Moriyasu, Managing Officer, COO of the IT & Communications Business Unit at Mitsui, the Japanese conglomerate has also invested in Smart Axiata in Cambodia, the country’s largest mobile telecom operator.
“By enhancing close collaboration between Axiata Digital and Mitsui, we are confident that we can support our partners and customers to create new value and accelerate their digital transformation in various industries,” Moriyasu said.