U.K. telecoms and TV infrastructure firm says it will use IPO proceeds to reduce debt

Arqiva on Monday said it aims to rise £1.5 billion through an initial public offering in London.

The U.K. telecoms and television masts operator will apply to list on the London Stock Exchange and will use the flotation to restructure and reduce its debt.

"The IPO will enable Arqiva’s leadership team to continue to execute on its proven strategy, whilst pursuing additional growth opportunities through our tower portfolio and investing in next-generation 5G and fibre technology and returning significant amounts to shareholders," said Arqiva chairman Mike Parton.

"Following the IPO, the group’s balance sheet will be appropriate for an asset-rich infrastructure company with long-term contracts, blue chip clients and strong cash flows, providing investment and allowing for significant shareholder returns through a progressive dividend," Parton said.

Amongst other things, Arqiva said its strategy is to increase its portfolio of telecoms sites and boosting its position in outdoor small cells infrastructure, as well as using its existing infrastructure for the rollout of new smart metering contracts and other Internet of Things (IoT) applications.

The announcement of the IPO comes shortly after the company’s private equity owners abandoned plans for a private sale, according to various financial news sources.