A consortium comprising BlackRock Inc. and Grain Management LLC is in advanced talks to buy a roughly 20% stake in Phoenix Tower International from funds managed by Blackstone Inc., according to people with knowledge of the matter.
(Bloomberg) — A consortium comprising BlackRock Inc. and Grain Management LLC is in advanced talks to buy a roughly 20% stake in Phoenix Tower International from funds managed by Blackstone Inc., according to people with knowledge of the matter.
BlackRock’s infrastructure arm and Grain, an investment firm that specializes in communications infrastructure, are negotiating to purchase the stake from Blackstone Real Estate Income Trust and Blackstone’s tactical opportunities arm for about $1.3 billion, a transaction that would value the tower operator at roughly $6.5 billion excluding debt, said the people, all of whom requested anonymity to discuss confidential information.
Terms aren’t finalized and could still change, or talks could fall apart at the last minute, they cautioned.
Representatives for BlackRock and Blackstone declined to comment. Grain Management didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.
Boca Raton, Florida-based Phoenix, which owns and operates over 22,000 telecom towers across Europe, the US, the Caribbean and Latin America, last week said it secured a €1.2 billion ($1.3 billion) senior credit facility in Europe. Led by Chief Executive Officer Dagan Kasavana, it counts Kuwait-backed Wren House Infrastructure and Blackstone’s infrastructure fund among its investors.
Telecommunication towers have drawn interest from alternative-asset managers in recent years, in part due to strong growth characteristics and the predictable nature of returns. In March, Vodafone Group Plc completed the sale of a stake in Vantage Towers to an entity co-controlled by KKR & Co. and Global Infrastructure Partners.
Separately, Carlyle Group Inc. last year committed up to $1 billion to partner with Tillman Global Holdings.
–With assistance from Vinicy Chan.
(Updates with Carlyle deal in seventh paragraph. A previous version of this story corrected the spelling of company’s name in the headline.)
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