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Entanet Acquisition Creates Significant Wholesale Player in CityFibre

Entanet has been acquired by CityFibre for £29m which marks the emergence of a significant wholesale player in the UK communications market.

The acquisition of Entanet, which has approximately 1,500 channel partners having conducted business with it in the 12 months ending 31 December 2016, will substantially increase the Company’s wholesale capabilities and its relationships with service providers, thereby extending CityFibre’s channels to market. By combining CityFibre’s fibre infrastructure with Entanet’s established wholesale products, systems and relationships with Channel Partners, the Company expects to realise synergies of over £3 million per annum within three years.

Entanet CEO Elsa Chen said: “Our partners will soon be able to take a strong, compelling and highly competitive proposition to the market, reaping the rewards of CityFibre’s national full fibre infrastructure footprints and next generation products. They will continue to enjoy the full support of Entanet’s long-established and mature channel strategy and its reputation for providing exceptional partner support services.

Together, we are creating a new breed of wholesale service provider that will empower channel partners to change the connectivity market landscape. We’re extremely excited about the opportunities we can bring to the channel with this transaction.”

CityFibre CEO Greg Mesch said: “With Entanet now part of the CityFibre family, our combined offering will accelerate the take-up of services over our growing network footprints, leveraging Entanet’s enviable channel partner network and continuing to transform digital connectivity for thousands of UK businesses.”

Entanet’s partners will benefit from access to CityFibre’s growing national footprints of full fibre networks that deliver next generation, gigabit-speed services. These will be offered alongside Entanet’s existing connectivity portfolio of fixed, wireless and mobile data connectivity services as well as hosted voice and telecoms.

The news comes after CityFibre Infrastructure Holdings announced that it intends to raise minimum of £185 million at 55 pence per share, fully underwritten by Citigroup, finnCap, Liberum and Macquarie, with the intention to raise further proceeds through an accelerated bookbuilding process which will be launched immediately. The net proceeds of the Placing and the Offer for Subscription (together, the “Capital Raising”) will be used to fund the growth of the Company’s full fibre network in the UK.

Greg Mesch, Chief Executive Officer of CityFibre, said: “We are building Gigabit Britain, driven by growing demand from Internet Service Providers and their customers to switch to full-fibre infrastructure. Our announcement to enter the residential market is the first step in our vision to bring gigabit connectivity to millions of UK homes and small businesses.

“This is about more than just better broadband – this is about future-proofing the digital infrastructure we’ve all come to rely on at work, at school, at home and in our communities. It’s also about stimulating the market, creating jobs and growth. The Government and Ofcom recognise that investment in alternative fibre networks will catalyse growth in the UK’s digital economy as well as reduce the country’s reliance on BT Openreach.”

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David Dungay

Editor - Comms Business Magazine