Spanish infrastructure investor Asterion Industrial Partners has taken a majority stake in the company rolling out the national broadband plan.
Asterion has acquired the stakes of Oak Hill Advisors and Twin Point Capital which, between them, accounted for 74 per cent of the business. It is also mopping up some other minority investors in the scheme, bringing its stake in the business to about 80 per cent.
National Broadband Ireland (NBI) told an Oireachtas committee last February that some of its early-stage backers would be replaced “with investors who specialise in long-term investments”.
Asterion will work with Granahan McCourt, which put together National Broadband Ireland and which will retain its 6 per cent interest in the business, as will Tetrad Corporation, which owns 13 per cent of the business.
The management team, which is led by chief executive Peter Hendrick, will continue in their roles.
The plan aims to deliver high-speed broadband to more than 559,000 premises with the rollout of an open-access network.
NBI chairman David McCourt said: “We’re incredibly proud to be bringing world-leading broadband infrastructure to over 1.1 million citizens across rural Ireland, and in doing so, help Ireland be years in advance of the EU’s target of a gigabit society by 2030.
“We are delighted to be partnering with Asterion, not only in NBI, but with additional investment committed to develop a centre of excellence in Ireland and deliver on our long-term vision to make Ireland globally renowned for telecoms services.”
Specialising in European infrastructure across telecoms, energy and utilities, and mobility sectors, Asterion combines financial experience with industry credentials.
Winnie Wutte, founding partner of Asterion, said the group was “delighted to partner Granahan McCourt and continue to invest in the development of rural fibre infrastructure in one of the most ambitious fibre rollouts in the world”.
“We are also excited and committed to the opportunity of creating a centre of excellence in Ireland in partnership with Granahan McCourt to open up tremendous long-term opportunities in the Irish market,” she said.