Carlyle to acquire 25% in Airtel’s Data Centre

Bharti Airtel and Comfort Investments II, an affiliated entity of CAP V Mauritius, an investment fund managed and advised by The Carlyle Group today announced an agreement under which Comfort Investments II will invest US$235 million in Nxtra Data, a wholly owned subsidiary of Airtel engaged in the data centre business.

The post-money enterprise valuation of Nxtra is approximately $1.2 billion and Carlyle will hold a stake of approximately 25% in the business upon completion of the transaction, with Airtel continuing to hold the remaining stake of approximately 75%. The transaction is subject to the necessary regulatory approvals, including approval from the Competition Commission of India.

Headquartered in New Delhi, Nxtra offers secure data centre services to leading Indian and global enterprises, hyperscalers, start-ups, SMEs and governments. Nxtra’s nationwide portfolio of 10 large data centres and more than 120 edge data centres provides customers with co-location services, cloud infrastructure, managed hosting, data backup, disaster recovery and remote infrastructure management.

Nxtra is building multiple large data centres across the country to capture the significant growth opportunities in India. Last year, the company commissioned a state of the art data centre in Pune and is building more across Chennai, Mumbai and Kolkata. Nxtra will use the proceeds from this transaction to continue scaling up its infrastructure and offerings across the country.

Gopal Vittal, MD & CEO (India and South Asia), Bharti Airtel said, “Rapid digitization has opened up a massive growth opportunity for data centres in India and we plan to accelerate our investments to become a major player in this segment. We are delighted to have Carlyle as a strategic partner in this exciting journey, particularly given their experience in this industry, and look forward to working with them.”

Neeraj Bharadwaj, Managing Director of the Carlyle Asia Partners advisory team said, “India is set to become one of the largest markets in the world for digital services. Airtel, with its proven track record of solid execution and customer focus, is well positioned to leverage the potential growth of data centres in India. We look forward to collaborating with Airtel to unlock the full potential of Nxtra.”

Greg Zeluck, Co-Head, Carlyle Asia Partners advisory team said, “Airtel is a high quality partner in India with whom Carlyle executives have built a strong and constructive relationship with over many years. We are delighted to be collaborating on this together, and believe Airtel’s nationwide network and strong governance coupled with Carlyle’s data centre experience and operational capabilities creates a compelling partnership that will help Nxtra to capture growing demand as data usage continues to surge.”

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