Impact investment manager BlueOrchard Finance will provide a US$10 million mezzanine facility to support the Philippine expansion of the Communication and Renewable Energy Infrastructure Group (CREI), an international telecom and renewable energy player with an established presence across emerging markets.
CREI is integrated within the global telecom service group Two Thirty Three Holdings, which covers all aspects of the telecom tower value chain in emerging markets, from design to manufacturing, installation and operations.
The funding provided by BlueOrchard will support CREI in building 618 tower sites within the next 18 months. Each tower can serve on average 3,800 households, taking the project’s potential reach to 2.4 million households with better mobile phone connectivity within the next one and half years.
The facility will also enable further financing from investors, such as leading development finance institutions. CREI targets continuous growth, including deploying up to 2,000 telecom towers by 2024.
CREI is one of the first players to be approved by the regulator to operate an outsourced towerco business in the Philippines and has been accredited by the two largest mobile network operators in the country.
The Philippines is experiencing strong GDP and population growth rates, yet its network currently has some of the lowest connection speeds and quality in Southeast Asia. At the same time, the Philippines has a young, digitally savvy, growing population that is increasingly driving demand for mobile data.
Philipp Mueller, CEO of BlueOrchard, says: “Building resilient and sustainable infrastructure is critical for emerging market economies and a key driver of their post-Covid growth.”
Index-Asia acted as the exclusive financial adviser of CREI for this transaction.