The operator will join its rival Omantel in monetising its passive infrastructure, seeking to sell and leaseback its towers
Ooredoo Oman has issued a tender for the sale and leaseback of its tower infrastructure, with ‘several companies with expertise in telecommunication towers’ invited to bid, according to a report in the Muscat Daily.
“Ooredoo will provide updates to the market regarding any significant developments in the project. The winning bid will be disclosed once a final decision is reached by the company, subject to approval from the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority and other relevant authorities in compliance with the law and the company’s internal regulations,” said the operator.
The operator is currently evaluating bids, though notes that the process is in the early stages.
The number of towers on offer, the estimated value of the infrastructure, and the financial details of bids have yet to be revealed.
Ooredoo Oman’s parent company, Ooredoo Group, has been exploring the sale of its tower assets in various markets for over a year now, following a global trend set by the likes of Vodafone, Deutsche Telekom, and Telefonica. These operators have all spun off their tower units in recent years to attract investment, buoyed by attractive valuations from private investment firms at a time when they are undergoing expensive fibre and 5G infrastructure rollouts.
Ooredoo itself has a portfolio of over 20,000 towers in the Middle East, North Africa, and Southeast Asia, which combined could be worth as much as $5 billion.
The sale of the operator’s Omani towers specifically was first hinted at back in September last year.
It should be noted that Ooredoo is not the only Middle Eastern operator to be monetising its tower infrastructure. The company’s local rival, Omantel, for example, sold its towers to Helios Towers Company at the end of last year for $495 million.
Oman’s final mobile player, Vodafone Oman, primarily uses tower infrastructure owned and operated by Oman Towers Company, with whom they struck a deal back in 2020.
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