Equinix Dives Into Africa, Buys MainOne

December 7th, 2021 by · Leave a Comment

The data center giant Equinix has made a surprising inorganic move into West Africa with the acquisition of MainOne. The $320M deal was announced this morning, giving Equinix not just a data center footprint on a new continent, but a stake in the subsea fiber business as well.

MainOne operates its own 7000km subsea cable connecting the west coast of Africa with Portugal as well as 1200km of terrestrial fiber in southern Nigeria. Its data center presence includes 64,000 square feet of space in Nigeria, Ghana, and Côte d’Ivoire with a fourth facility under construction and additional land for expansion on tap.

That’s not a huge deal for Equinix when placed next to the rest of their empire, of course. But not only is it a foothold on a new continent for the Platform Equinix ecosystem, the fiber assets are something Equinix hasn’t really delved into until now.

Current MainOne CEO Funke Opeke will continue to operate the business, which isn’t surprising. It isn’t just assets that make for an entry into a new market, but talent with local knowledge and extensive relationships — which is what Equinix is really after here of course.  The next story will be what new opportunities the combined teams will invest Equinix’s substantial resources in first.

The deal is expected to close in Q1 of 2022.  The purchase will add $60M in annualized revenue, and the reported 14xEBITDA multiple puts the acquired annual EBITDA at about $23M.  Equinix expects the purchase to be AFFO accretive upon closing, not including integration.

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Categories: Datacenter · Mergers and Acquisitions · Undersea cables

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