Axiata’s tower arm Edotco weighing $700m financing, sources say

Edotco Group Sdn., the wireless tower business of Malaysian telecommunications group Axiata Group Bhd., is considering raising as much as $700 million in loans, according to people familiar with the matter.

The Kuala Lumpur-based company is asking banks to submit proposals for the financing, the people said, asking not to be identified because the matter is private. Funds from the loans could be used for capital expenditures and overseas expansion, one of the people said.

Should the financing go ahead, the company is unlikely to move forward with a plan to raise as much as $600 million from a share sale, one of the people said. Edotco was working with an adviser on a potential equity offering, Bloomberg News reported last month.

Discussions are preliminary and the company could still decide against taking out the loans, the people said. Representatives for Axiata and Edotco declined to comment.

Founded in 2012, Edotco has a portfolio of over 54,000 towers across nine Asian nations including Malaysia, Thailand, Pakistan and Myanmar, according to a recent press release. Axiata is the controlling shareholder of Edotco, while other minority holders include Malaysia sovereign wealth fund Khazanah Nasional Bhd. and Innovation Network Corp. of Japan.

The company’s services include tower leasing, colocation, operations and maintenance. In April it acquired almost 3,000 towers in the Philippines from PLDT Inc. – BLOOMBERG