The investment marks the US-based investment firm’s latest push into Southeast Asia’s digital infrastructure market

Today, KKR has announced that it has made a $400 million investment in Malaysian submarine cable specialist OMS Group.

OMS is one of Southeast Asia’s largest subsea cable service providers, using its fleet of cable ships and cable barges to provide support and maintenance for the region’s submarine cable infrastructure.

Alongside these vessels, the company also offers a variety of technical solutions for cable installation, maintenance, and repair.

For OMS, the new investment from KKR will allow the company to expand its current operations, including growing its fleet size and investing in additional cable landing stations and related infrastructure.

“KKR’s investment in OMS Group underscores the value of OMS Group’s capabilities, which provides immense economic value to communities, corporations, and countries around the world by constructing and maintaining critical subsea data infrastructure,” explained Ronnie Lim, Group CEO of OMS Group. “Together with KKR’s strong track record in supporting and investing in data infrastructure assets and its platform-building expertise, OMS Group is in a stronger position to support its clients to build and maintain greater global connectivity.”

For KKR, meanwhile, this investment marks the latest move as part of their wider focus on Southeast Asia, a region in which the demand for digital infrastructure is growing rapidly.

“Our tailored solution for OMS Group also creates strong adjacencies with KKR’s recent digital infrastructure investments and builds on long-term secular tailwinds in the region, including increased data consumption, enterprise cloud needs, a focus on digitalization by governments, and a booming digital economy,” said Projesh Banerjea, Director, Infrastructure at KKR. “We look forward to sharing our global network and infrastructure expertise to take OMS Group to its next stage of growth.”

Back in 2020, KKR invested an undisclosed amount in Pinnacle Towers, the largest independent mobile tower company in the Philippines, banking on the country’s increasing demand for mobile connectivity.

More recently, KKR acquired a 20% stake in Singtel’s regional data centre business for $807 million, citing the country’s growing role in the region’s digital economy, as well as the increasing adoption of AI and other digital technologies.

But is it not only Southeast Asia that KKR is interested in when it comes to telecoms infrastructure.

In Europe, the company has been embroiled in a longstanding back-and-forth with Italian incumbent operator TIM for years now. First seeking to buy the company outright for almost €11 billion in 2021, the company has switched its stance to investing solely in TIM’s would-be NetCo, containing the company’s fixed line infrastructure and submarine cable unit Sparkle.

KKR submitted a binding offer for NetCo earlier this month, but TIM’s largest shareholder Vivendi remains unconvinced.

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