Nigerian firm Pan African Towers (PAT) has signed a NGN 7.2 billion telecoms infrastructure investment deal with Canadian firm Watt Renewable Corporation, the Guardian reported. Watt Renewable will provide alternative energy systems such as solar ones to every tower owned and managed by PAT in Nigeria, to help it reduce exposure by as much as 50 percent.
PAT chief executive officer Wole Abu told journalists that the deal is a milestone in its journey of innovation, service delivery, and pushing Nigeria to the broadband target. He said it will positively effect the quality of voice and data services, calling erratic power supply one of the major challenges for telecoms operators in Nigeria.
Abu said that PAT manages about 1,000 towers in Nigeria and this will double by year-end. PAT also has a footprint in Ghana “which we shall start to exploit as soon as we are done with the Nigerian environment”.
PAT’s financial controller, Seun Fajebe said the tower firm need not put money down because there are investment partners. The CEO and founder of Watt Renewable, Oluwole Eweje, said the Nigerian subsidiary will provide alternative power supply to PAT, to help it and the MNOs cut expenses on electricity generation by half.
Director of investor relations at Watt Renewable, Sherisse Alexander, said that for improved services, partnerships between telecoms operators and power firms are critical to the sector. The funding is coming largely from abroad, because it is still difficult to raise capital from within because of low investor confidence, among other things.
Source: Telecom Paper