• PIF and stc Group will then combine TAWAL and GLIC to form the region’s largest telecom tower company to best serve consumers
  • The new merged entity will become one of the largest tower companies in the world
  • stc aims to recycle capital while retaining stakes in strategic assets of qualitative value

RIYADH – The Public Investment Fund (PIF) and Saudi Telecommunications Company (stc Group) announced today the signing of definitive agreements whereby PIF will acquire a 51% stake in Telecommunication Towers Company Limited (TAWAL) from stc Group. TAWAL is the largest telecommunications infrastructure company in Saudi Arabia and one of the largest in the region, with an enterprise value of $5.85 billion per the agreement. Subsequently, PIF and stc Group will consolidate TAWAL and Golden Lattice Investment Company (GLIC) – in which PIF holds a majority shareholding – into a new merged entity, forming the largest regional company in the telecommunication infrastructure sector.

The combined new entity will be owned 54% by PIF and 43.1% by stc Group, with GLIC minority shareholders owning the remaining issued share capital.

The transactions are expected to be completed in the second half of 2024 after obtaining all required regulatory approvals and satisfying other necessary conditions under the agreements.

Raid Ismail, Head of MENA Direct Investments at PIF said: “Today's announcement is a significant milestone for the telecommunications industry in Saudi Arabia and the wider region. By bringing together the assets of GLIC and TAWAL, we will establish a consolidated platform on which the telecommunications sector can flourish and give people a better experience to best connect communities and businesses. It is also in line with PIF’s strategy and the Saudi Vision 2030. Fast, reliable and accessible connectivity is a key enabler of growth and a cornerstone for the society, and these agreements mark a major stride towards a more interconnected digital future.”

Motaz Alangari, Group Chief Investment Officer of stc Group said: “These agreements are part of stc Group’s continuous endeavor to grow and maximize value in the most sustainable manner, by recycling capital while retaining ownership in strategic value-added assets to benefit from the return on these assets and enable expansion into new domains. Today’s announcement is in line with stc Group’s strategy and the pivotal role that the group is playing in accelerating the digital transformation of society and the economy in Saudi Arabia and the region. Combining TAWAL and GLIC is a stepping-stone to consolidating the Saudi tower market and driving further efficiencies and operational excellence to deliver superior experiences and value for customers.”

The new entity is expected to significantly enhance consumer experience and network coverage, as well as improve connectivity and mobile internet speeds by consolidating Saudi Arabia’s tower assets. It will also deliver operational efficiencies, help drive wider innovation in the telecommunication sector across the region and globally, and support development of a more efficient and frictionless business environment.

The agreements mark PIF and stc Group’s ambition to integrate and strengthen the Saudi telecommunication infrastructure sector to unlock its consolidated potential. This follows TAWAL’s acquisition of infrastructure assets in Bulgaria, Croatia and Slovenia, making this Saudi national champion the region’s largest independent tower company. The new merged entity will possess approximately 30,000 mobile tower sites and will become one of the largest tower companies globally with estimated annual revenues of approximately $1.3 billion.

Today’s announcement aims to ensure the resilience and international competitiveness of a critical national digital infrastructure asset and aligns with the goals of Vision 2030. It also builds on PIF’s and stc Group’s strategy to enhance Saudi Arabia’s innovation capabilities as a globally competitive hub for the technology, media and telecommunication sector.

About PIF:

The Public Investment Fund (PIF) is one of the largest and most impactful sovereign wealth funds in the world. It plays a leading role in advancing Saudi Arabia’s economic transformation and diversification, as well as contributing to shaping the future of the global economy. Since 2017, PIF has established 94 companies. PIF is building a diversified portfolio by entering into attractive and long-term investment opportunities in 13 strategic sectors in Saudi Arabia and globally. PIF's strategy, as set out in the PIF Program 2021-2025 – one of the Vision 2030 realization programs – aims to enable many promising sectors and contribute to increasing local content by creating partnerships with the private sector, in addition to injecting at least SAR150 billion annually into the local economy. PIF works to transfer technologies and localize knowledge to build a prosperous and sustainable economy domestically. As the investment arm of Saudi Arabia, PIF looks to make unique investments, and is building strategic alliances and partnerships with significant international institutions and organizations, which contribute to achieving real long-term value for Saudi Arabia, in line with the objectives of Vision 2030. PIF has also created an operational governance model that reflects its main tasks and objectives, in line with best international practices. Applying this model of governance enhances the level of transparency and effectiveness in decision-making and future progress.

More information about PIF can be found at: www.pif.gov.sa

Media Contact: media@pif.gov.sa

About stc Group:

“stc group” is an engine of digital transformation, offering advanced solutions and driving a role in the digitisation process. The group provides a comprehensive suite of services encompassing digital infrastructure, cloud computing, cybersecurity, Internet of Things (IoT), digital payments, digital media, and digital entertainment. The group comprises over 13 subsidiaries across the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Middle East, North Africa, and Europe.

To know more about stc group: Click here