What’s up with... KKR & Reintel, Intelsat, Verizon & Google Cloud
- KKR adds to its European assets
- Intelsat edges closer to the end of bankruptcy protection
- Verizon adds Google Cloud to its edge strategy
In today’s collection of news niblets, we’ve got more private equity investment action, a welcome end in sight for Intelsat’s bankruptcy protection woes, and more telco/hyperscaler actin at Verizon’s edge.
Private Equity giant KKR continues to increase its influence in the European telecoms sector. Already making headlines with its €10.8 billion bid to buy TIM (Telecom Italia), the firm has splashed €971 million on a 49% stake in Reintel, a major provider of dark fibre capacity in Spain that is part of utility firm Red Eléctrica Group. Oleg Shamovsky, Managing Director and Head of Core Infrastructure in Europe at KKR, stated: “This is a very important strategic partnership for KKR alongside a highly respected blue chip Spanish corporate. We have been following Reintel’s development for many years and are delighted to have the opportunity to invest in this critical telecommunications infrastructure company, and bring to bear KKR’s capabilities and experience in the sector as we strategically partner with Red Eléctrica.” Read more.
Intelsat is on course to emerge from bankruptcy protection in “early 2022” following approval for its Plan of Reorganization by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, Richmond Division. The plan will reduce Intelsat’s debt by more than half – from approximately $16 billion to $7 billion – and was supported by all creditor groups. Intelsat’s CEO, Stephen Spengler, noted: “Throughout the process, we have driven our business forward at full speed – launching new satellites, advancing the accelerated clearing of C-band spectrum, acquiring Gogo’s commercial aviation business, progressing our next generation network and service strategy, and serving customers every day with the excellence for which we are known... Our goals include building the world’s first global 5G satellite-based, software-defined, unified network,” Spengler added. For the full details, see this press release.
Verizon and Google Cloud have unveiled a broad partnership built around the operator’s 5G network and services and the hyperscaler’s edge computing capabilities, including private 5G edge and “public 5G mobile edge computing for developers and enterprises.” Read more.
According to the latest statistics from regulator Ofcom, full-fibre broadband is now available to more than 8 million UK homes, an increase of 3 million properties during the past year. And in even better news, broadband connections capable of delivering downstream speeds of at least 1 Gbit/s, over fibre or upgraded cable access networks (using DOCSIS3.x technology), is available to 13.7 million UK homes. But, notes Ofcom in this blog, “we’ve found that many households have not yet taken up on these services where they’re available to them.” Read more.
Radio access network-as-a-service specialist Dense Air has been acquired by Sidewalk Infrastructure Partners (SIP), the investment company backed by Alphabet (Google’s parent company) and Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan that aims to fund “technology-enabled sustainable and inclusive infrastructure.” Financial details were not disclosed. Read more.
BT is to offer its industrial and critical infrastructure customers the IoT and OT (operational technology) cyber security solutions developed by Nozomi Networks as part of its Operational Technology Threat Management offering. “By incorporating Nozomi Networks’ solutions into its customer portfolio, BT customers will be able to monitor their industrial equipment and processes, providing full visibility of their assets, and the ability to rapidly detect and remediate cyber threats,” notes the vendor. Nozomi Networks solutions support more than 57 million devices in thousands of installations across energy, manufacturing, mining, transportation, utilities, building automation, smart cities and critical infrastructure. Read more.
Ericsson has unveiled a range of ‘hybrid mall’ applications that are “expected to be a common element of everyday life in 2030 by the vast majority of current early adopters. “The semi-public nature of shopping malls means latency bounds could more easily be controlled and next-generation experiences could be delivered early on. XR devices could be provided on-site, making it possible to deploy private networks with custom applications also for consumers,” says Magnus Frodigh, Head of Ericsson Research. Read more.
- The staff, TelecomTV
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