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Helios Towers Ghana secures $40m from Standard Bank for expansion

Helios Towers Ghana, a direct subsidiary of Helios Towers Africa has secured a $40 million facility from Standard Bank Group for expansion of its business in Ghana.

Helios Towers is a wireless communications towers management company. The company has a deal with Millicom Ghana, operators of Tigo, the third largest mobile service in Ghana, in which Millicom sold 750 of its towers to Helios.

Helios Towers says in a statement that the financing will be used to finance the next phase of its network of telecommunications towers across Ghana.

The club deal, it says was put together on behalf of Stanbic Bank in Ghana (a member of Standard Bank Group Limited), Standard Chartered Bank and Standard Chartered Bank Ghana.

In January 2011, the International Finance Corporation (IFC) of the World Bank Group announced a $25 million equity investment in Helios Towers Africa to help the company build and maintain mobile phone towers in several countries across sub-Saharan Africa. The investment, according to the IFC is to enable Helios Towers to increase mobile phone coverage and reduce communication costs in the region.

The IFC indicated that Helios Towers is building a pan-Africa tower company starting in Ghana and expanding into other countries such as Tanzania.

Most telecoms companies are now leasing towers to reduce operation costs. The reduced costs of leasing towers it is believed allows new, smaller mobile phone companies companies access to existing tower facilities and allows larger operators to expand into remote areas that would normally be unprofitable.  Watchers of the industry believe that lower tower costs should result in enhanced service offerings and declining mobile prices in Africa.

By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi

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