The Public Investment Fund (PIF) has offered almost half a billion dollars for a 60% stake in Zain’s Saudi Arabian mobile towers

Tower deals keep coming this week, with Saudi Arabia’s sovereign fund, the PIF, making a non-binding offer of $484 million for a controlling stake in Zain’s Saudi Arabian tower unit.

Kuwait-based operator Zain is the second largest mobile operator in Saudi Arabia, currently operates 8,069 mobile towers across the country.

The deal will see the PIF take a 60% stake in the tower company, while Prince Saud Bin Fahad and Sultan Holding Company will each also bid for a further 10% stake. If all deals are finalised, Zain will retain control the final 20% of the tower unit.

Naturally, the deals will await regulatory approval, with Zain KSA saying it will work “with the different parties on the best way to execute the offer”.

Until recently, Zain had ambitions of signing a deal to combine its tower infrastructure with that of rival Etisalat, potentially bringing in new investors at the same time. However, such plans had ultimately come to nothing, with Etisalat pulling out citing strategic concerns.

Etisalat had been considering selling its Saudi Arabian mobile towers since 2015.

The sale of mobile tower infrastructure continues to be a hot topic all over the world. Just yesterday, Veon announced it would offload 100% of its Russian tower subsidiary National Tower Company to Service-Telecom for around $970 billion.


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