Community Fibre to invest up to £400 million in accelerated expansion of full-fibre broadband to one million households and businesses across London
London, Wednesday 29th July 2020: Funds advised by Warburg Pincus LLC, a leading global private equity firm focused on growth investing, and DTCP, an investment management group specialized in technology growth equity and digital infrastructure, have reached an agreement to acquire a majority stake in Community Fibre Limited, London’s fastest and most competitively priced 100% full-fibre broadband provider, alongside its existing investors Amber Infrastructure and RPMI Railpen. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Community Fibre is future-proofing London communities by delivering 1 Gbps of full-fibre broadband to households and up to 10 Gbps of full-fibre broadband to businesses, at the most competitive prices on the market. Their mission is to empower communities through offering more reliable and affordable connections, and to make London a Gigafast city, a key UK government target. Today, Community Fibre announces ambitions to fibre-enable one million households by 2023, funded by the new shareholders.
Unlike most other providers, they launch and operate their own dedicated 100% full-fibre network. Running fibre optic cable all the way into homes and business premises helps deliver maximum speed, reliability, and efficiency, with zero use of legacy copper.
The market opportunity for Community Fibre is significant. Demand for high speed, high quality internet to the home (FTTH) and to businesses (FTTB) is growing exponentially, yet a large proportion of the UK’s capital is offered some of the poorest and slowest broadband services in Europe.
Graeme Oxby, CEO of Community Fibre, said: "This is an exciting deal for Community Fibre. Having Warburg Pincus and DTCP on board is a tremendous endorsement for our business. In a post COVID-19 world, digital connectivity will be more crucial than ever. With further new investment, we can work faster than ever to deliver 100% full-fibre broadband to social housing residents and to local communities and their businesses across London."
On completion of the transaction, expected within a few weeks, Olaf Swantee will join Community Fibre as Executive Chairman. Olaf was formerly CEO of Sunrise Communications, the second largest telecoms provider in Switzerland and CEO of EE.
Olaf Swantee, Incoming Executive Chairman at Community Fibre, said: “I am excited to be joining a business in a sector that I am passionate about, where there is a clear vision and purpose. Working alongside blue chip investors such as Warburg Pincus, DTCP, Amber Infrastructure, and RPMI Railpen, will also open up new and exciting growth opportunities.”
Warburg Pincus has invested $4 billion behind a telecommunications and technology infrastructure investment thesis for more than 20 years. Recent examples include inexio in Germany, Converge ICT in the Philippines, INEA in Poland, America.Net in Brazil, Airtel in Africa, and Inmarsat in the UK.
Rene Obermann, Co-Head of Europe and Managing Director of Warburg Pincus Deutschland GmbH, said: “Community Fibre aims to close the digital divide and promote social inclusion. Affordable high speed internet for London’s social housing, and free Gigafast connection to community centres and libraries will create limitless opportunities in education, recruitment, and training, with one click of a button.”
DTCP has been investing at the intersection of technology and digital infrastructure for years, including in very successful companies like edge cloud company, Fastly, and tower infrastructure company, Swiss Towers. Vicente Vento, Co-Founder and CEO at DTCP, said: “Now, more than ever, we believe in a world where ubiquitous and affordable high speed connectivity helps society thrive. We are looking forward to partnering with Community Fibre, together with Warburg Pincus, to support them on their mission to power communities with ultra-fast fibre connectivity across London.”
Greenhill advised Warburg Pincus and DTCP. Jefferies International Limited advised Community Fibre and its shareholders.
Community Fibre: [email protected]
Warburg Pincus: Julie Foster, +44 7471 992907
DTCP: Julia Wolters, +49 160 6809906
Amber Infrastructure Group: Erica Sibree/Amy Joslin : +44 20 7939 0558/0587
RPMI Railpen: [email protected]
About Community Fibre
Community Fibre believes that everyone deserves better broadband. It is delivering a more inclusive future across London communities by providing 100% full-fibre future-proofed broadband at up to 10 Gbps at the most competitive prices in the market. All Community Fibre’s services are fully symmetrical so that the upload speed is the same as download speed, which is crucial for applications like video calling and simply working or educating from home. Community Fibre is also committed to supporting local communities by offering free full-fibre broadband to some of the community centres in the London boroughs we operate in, as well as delivering online digital skills training that is free and easy for everyone to access and benefit from. For more information, please visit www.communityfibre.co.uk
About Warburg Pincus LLC
Warburg Pincus LLC is a leading global private equity firm focused on growth investing. The firm has more than $53 billion in private equity assets under management. The firm’s active portfolio of more than 185 companies is highly diversified by stage, sector, and geography.
Warburg Pincus has invested $4 billion behind a telecommunications and technology infrastructure investment thesis for more than 20 years. Recent examples include fibre-based broadband companies in rural Germany (inexio), the Philippines (Converge ICT), Poland (INEA), UK (Inmarsat which provides satellite-based broadband communications for the maritime, aviation and government sectors), Brazil (America.Net) and Africa (Airtel Africa which provides mobile broadband to 14 countries in Africa).
Warburg Pincus is an experienced partner to management teams seeking to build durable companies with sustainable value. Founded in 1966, Warburg Pincus has raised 19 private equity funds, which have invested more than $84 billion in over 900 companies in more than 40 countries.
The firm is headquartered in New York with offices in Amsterdam, Beijing, Berlin, Hong Kong, Houston, London, Luxembourg, Mumbai, Mauritius, San Francisco, São Paulo, Shanghai, and Singapore. For more information please visit www.warburgpincus.com.
DTCP is an investment management group with $1.7 billion in assets under management and advisory from corporate and institutional investors, and a portfolio of over 60 companies. The group provides venture and growth capital, private equity, and advisory services to the technology, media, and telecommunications sectors. It operates and invests in Europe, North America, and Asia out of its Hamburg, San Francisco, Tel Aviv, and Seoul offices. To learn more about DTCP, visit dtcp.capital, www.linkedin.com/company/dtcp-capital, or @dtcp_capital on Twitter.
About Amber Infrastructure Group
Amber Infrastructure (Amber) is a specialist international investment manager, focused on investment origination, asset management, and fund management. With over £4 billion in funds under management, Amber invests across six funds and a number of managed accounts. Amber’s core business focuses on sourcing, developing, advising, investing in and managing infrastructure assets across the public, transport, energy, digital, and demographic infrastructure sectors that support the lives of people, homes, and businesses internationally.
Amber has invested in Community Fibre through the Amber managed National Digital Infrastructure Fund (NDIF) and targets investments in digital infrastructure in the UK. NDIF forms part of the UK Government’s landmark DIIF, a government initiative to accelerate investment into fibre-optic based broadband networks and related businesses to build the next generation of digital networks and accelerate the rollout of ultrafast connectivity across the UK.
Amber is headquartered in London with offices in Europe, North America, and Australia and employs approximately 130 infrastructure professionals.
About RPMI Railpen
RPMI and RPMI Railpen run the railways pension schemes on behalf of their parent, the Railways Pension Trustee Company Limited (RPTCL). RPMI Railpen is the trading name of Railway Pension Investments Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). RPMI Railpen acts as the investment manager of the railways pension schemes and is responsible for the management of around £30 billion.
RPMI offers a complete range of pension administration services for all types of scheme, including Final Salary, Career Average Revalued Earnings and Defined Contribution, along with pensioner payroll, data cleanse, co-sourcing and hosting and scheme accounting.
The company also provides a range of services to pension scheme trustees, such as communications, trustee training, scheme balloting, pensions technical and regulatory services and scheme governance.
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