Co-investment vehicle on Fiber to the Home broadband networks
The transaction supports the roll out of fiber networks in low dense rural areas and medium dense areas. The borrower, Obelix is a joint venture formed by Vauban Infrastructure Partners (51%) and Bouygues Télécom (49%), and acquires long-term access rights to fiber to the home (FTTH) networks to various infrastructure operators. Subsequently, Obelix is renting the FTTH lines to retail operators, of which Bouygues Télécom is the anchor tenant.
Obelix benefit for a long-term master service agreement with Bouygues Télécom to use exclusively Obelix’ services for its FFTH access within the 21.4m premises included in its perimeter.
The financing structure includes €1.3 Bn capex facility with a 20-year maturity, 600m€ of which being privately placed to international infrastructure debt investors such as the funds managed by Rivage Investment.
Strong market trend favorable to the use of FTTH, with clear regulation of the telecom sector from the ARCEP. Metrics are strong and compensation mechanism under the master service agreement with Bouygues Télécom is protective.
The various infrastructure operators in charge of the physical roll out of the network benefit from a monopolistic position regulated by the ARCEP, which prevent any network overbuild. In addition, the financing is not exposed to construction risk.
Obelix presents a strong investment grade credit profile, and the remuneration allows the lenders to get a good relative value.
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