Tuesday, October 17, 2017

SoftBank plans new JV targeting U.S. cell towers

SoftBank and Australia's Lendlease Group are planning to a joint venture company to own and operate cell towers across the U.S, according to The Wall Street Journal and other media sources. The initial plan envisions the acquisition of about 8,000 cell sites, many but not all of which would come from Sprint. SoftBank holds a 70% equity stake in Sprint.

In April 2016, Sprint announced an arrangement to sell and lease back certain existing network assets, thereby raising $2.2 billion for addressing upcoming debt maturities.

Under the deal, several bankruptcy remote entities (collectively “Network LeaseCo”) will acquire certain existing network assets and then lease them back to Sprint. The assets acquired by Network LeaseCo will be used as collateral to raise approximately $2.2 billion in borrowings from external investors, including SoftBank. The $2.2 billion of cash proceeds Sprint expects to receive from the transaction is scheduled to be repaid in staggered, unequal payments through January 2018.


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