The Ukrainian national fibre infrastructure and digital service provider Datagroup will receive a $65 million loan from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) to help in the acquisition of Volia, the country’s leading cable operator.
Commenting on the development, Matteo Patrone, EBRD MD, Eastern Europe and the Caucasus, said: “At the EBRD we believe in the power of technology to bring about change for the better. Ukraine’s increasing digitalisation requires large-scale investments to expand coverage, accelerate speed and improve quality. Soon Ukrainian consumers will reap the benefits of Datagroup and Volia joining forces. The merged entity will invest in better infrastructure, innovation and excellent customer service, making it easier for all to connect with each other”.
Lenna Koszarny, Horizon Capital’s founding partner and CEO, added “We are delighted that the EBRD is backing our vision of bringing Datagroup and Volia together. This merger will create a platform of sufficient scale to attract substantial capital investments to modernise Ukraine’s last-mile and national fibre infrastructure. The EBRD is a valued partner of Horizon Capital and its portfolio companies, providing expansion loans to increase production capacity, acquisition financing to grow businesses and fund commitments to attract private capital to the region. The success of Datagroup and Volia will serve to promote Ukraine’s investment attractiveness and ultimately bring more foreign direct investment to the country”.
Mikhail Shelemba, Datagroup CEO and shareholder, stated: “We are delighted to announce our cooperation with the EBRD resulting in the provision of $65million in financing. These funds will be invested in the business to support growth and development – the acquisition of Volia as well as full-scale network modernisation. This financing supports our development plans, ensuring our network is the most modern in the Ukrainian telecommunications market, bringing quality of services to a whole new level and ensuring we surpass customer expectations as their reliable partner. We believe this is just the beginning of a long-term collaboration with the EBRD and look forward to many opportunities and large-scale projects ahead.”.
Datagroup is majority owned by a fund managed by Horizon Capital, while the EBRD is the largest institutional investor in Ukraine.