US firm agrees to buy Essar’s tower unit for Rs2,000 crore

US firm agrees to buy Essar’s tower unit for Rs2,000 crore

New Delhi: Telecom tower firm American Tower Corp. will buy Essar Group’s tower unit for Rs2,000 crore in equity and assumed debt, to expand in the world’s fastest growing mobile market.

American Tower has agreed to buy the share capital of Essar Telecom Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd in an all-cash deal, the companies said in a joint statement on Wednesday. This would be the third acquisition in India in about a year for US-based American Tower, which has earlier bought firms Xcel Telecom and Transcend.

Last month, Essar’s competitor GTL Infrastructure Ltd agreed to buy mobile firm Aircel’s telecom towers for $1.8 billion (Rs8,334 crore today), adding 17,500 towers to its existing 14,500. Essar Telecom Infrastructure has about 4,450 wireless communications tower sites, the companies said. American Tower owns about 2,000 tower sites in India, and more than 26,000 globally, according to its website.

The Economic Times reported the deal earlier on Wednesday and cited a total $450 million valuation, that included $300 million in equity and assumption of $150 million of debt held by Essar’s tower unit.