A new multimillion-dollar capital raise will enable WIOCC to accelerate its growth across Africa while introducing a new investor into the company.
Verdant Capital advised WIOCC on an $80-million equity capital raise, $75-million of which was invested by CAPE IV, a fund managed by African private equity fund manager African Capital Alliance.
The balance was invested by management and an existing shareholder.
The equity raised has been supplemented by a debt capital raise, with the total capital raise of $200-million to be used to expand WIOCC’s connectivity within Africa and internationally and to launch a network of pan-African data centres through newly created WIOCC Group company Open Access Data Centres (OADC).
“As well as introducing a strong new investor into the company, the capital will be used to support WIOCC’s expansion strategy across Africa and accelerate its investment in enhancing the continent’s digital infrastructure,” the company said in a statement.
Strategic investments in the new Equiano and 2Africa international subsea systems will augment and complement WIOCC’s existing core network infrastructure, cost-effectively adding multi-terabits of capacity and significantly increasing its options for delivering the high-availability solutions demanded in markets across Africa.
Further, WIOCC’s terrestrial strategy, which includes deployment of metropolitan and national networks in key locations, will be extended to include new countries and metropolitan areas, increasing its portfolio of end-to-end solutions for clients across Africa.
Part of the capital raise will be used to fund OADC, which is creating the interconnected pan-African network of open-access, carrier-neutral data centres.
First-phase locations will house key submarine cable landings in Lagos, Durban and Mogadishu, supporting the drive to land international submarine capacity directly into carrier-neutral data centres.
“Each will provide clients with bespoke co-location facilities and ultra-reliable, seamless connectivity directly into new international subsea systems, eliminating the costs and risks traditionally associated with terrestrial backhauling,” the company pointed out.
Construction and fit-out is underway in Lagos and Durban, with both to be launched early in 2022, while the Mogadishu data centre will be ready before the end of 2022.
Further phases of deployment will deliver more than 20 new data centres in strategic locations throughout the continent, focusing on major connectivity hubs in each country.