EQT Infrastructure to make majority investment in Spirit Communications


  • EQT Infrastructure to invest in majority stake in Spirit Communications, a leading pure-play fiber based data and broadband service provider in South Carolina, North Carolina and Georgia in the U.S.; the current owners will retain a significant stake in the company
  • Spirit operates in the highly attractive fiber infrastructure sector, a core market for EQT where it holds significant industry expertise
  • Spirit and EQT Infrastructure are jointly committed to continue to provide high quality services to current and future customers and to continue the growth of the company

The EQT Infrastructure III fund (“EQT Infrastructure” or “the fund”) has signed a definitive agreement to invest in a majority stake of Spirit Communications (“Spirit” or “the company”) from its founding partners who will retain a significant ownership interest in the company.  Following the transaction, Spirit Communications President and CEO Robert Keane and current Chairman of the Board of Spirit Brian Singleton will each be appointed to the new Board of Directors.

Founded in 1985, Spirit is a leading pure-play provider of fiber based data and broadband services to enterprises, governments, and wireless carriers in the Carolinas and Georgia. The company’s network is comprised of over 9,000 miles of fiber and serves thousands of customers across 17 metro markets.  Spirit’s fiber is directly connected to over 2,400 buildings as well as over 2,500 cell sites.

EQT Infrastructure will invest in the continued development of Spirit’s fiber footprint and services. The company is expected to benefit from the underlying macro trends of growing data traffic and increasing data bandwidth needs.

Robert Keane, President and CEO of Spirit Communications, commented, “After many months of effort to identify the right partner to continue and accelerate Spirit’s capabilities, EQT was identified as the type of partner that would help transform the business. EQT has had a long and storied history beginning with the heritage of the Wallenberg family which has significant investments in many household names in North America, such as, Electrolux, AstraZeneca and Ericsson to name a few. I am very excited to join the new board and to work with EQT on the continued growth of Spirit.”

Jan Vesely, Director at EQT Partners, Investment Advisor to the fund, added: “We are very impressed with what the management team and the current owners have been able to achieve with the company and are thrilled about the opportunity to invest in the future growth and development of Spirit. The company is a perfect match for EQT Infrastructure’s expertise in the fiber sector and strategy to build a platform for growth in the region.”

Brian Singleton, CEO of TruVista and Chairman of Spirit Communications, stated, “Spirit has been an essential part of the fabric of each of our companies since 1985, supporting the needs of the Member Companies while enhancing the communications infrastructure for our customers. This partnership with EQT Infrastructure gives us a unique platform for even greater success in the years to come.”

The parties have agreed not to disclose financial details of the transaction.

The transaction is subject to customary regulatory approval and other closing conditions.

TD Securities and Waller Capital Partners, LLC served as co-financial advisors to Spirit in connection with the transaction. McNair Law Firm, P.A. served as legal counsel to Spirit in connection with the transaction.  Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP and Morgan, Lewis, & Bockius LLP served as legal advisors to EQT Infrastructure.

Media Contact
Grey Humphrey
Chief Marketing Officer
+1 (803) 726-4080

EQT Press office: +46-8-506 55 334 (International media)

KEKST: + 1 (212) 521 4800 (US media)
Daniel Yunger or Ross Lovern, daniel.yunger@kekst.com / ross.lovern@kekst.com

About Spirit Communications
Headquartered in Columbia, South Carolina, Spirit uses traditional and advanced technologies to connect people around the corner, throughout the Carolinas, and beyond, enabling customers to transform their operations through fast, stable and secure offerings that flex with business demand. With the most advanced technologies, Spirit provides voice, data, Internet and fiber optic solutions along with a full suite of Cloud services to Enterprise, Carrier and Government customers across the Southeast. As a leading provider, Spirit serves thousands of customers in over 150 service locations with over 9,000 miles of fiber throughout South Carolina, North Carolina and Georgia.

More info: www.spiritcom.com

About EQT
EQT is a leading alternative investments firm with approximately EUR 37 billion in raised capital across 24 funds. EQT funds have portfolio companies in Europe, Asia and the US with total sales of more than EUR 19 billion and approximately 110,000 employees. EQT works with portfolio companies to achieve sustainable growth, operational excellence and market leadership.

More info: www.eqtpartners.com


Categories: News


Kinnevik acquires 18.5% in Com Hem



Kinnevik AB (publ) (“Kinnevik”) today announced that it has agreed to acquire 33.9 million shares, corresponding to an approximate 18.5% interest, in Com Hem Holding AB (publ) (“Com Hem”) from NorCell S.à r.l., the indirect investment holding company of funds advised by BC Partners LLP, for a cash consideration of SEK 110 per share, or SEK 3.7 billion in total.

Com Hem offers broadband, TV, play and telephony services to Swedish households and companies. With its powerful and future-proofed broadband network covering half of the country’s households, Com Hem is an important driver of creating a digital Sweden. Com Hem’s shares are listed on Nasdaq Stockholm under the ticker code COMH.

Kinnevik’s acting CEO, Joakim Andersson, commented:

“Com Hem has a strong market position in the Swedish broadband and TV market, and offers attractive growth and cash flow. The acquisition enables Kinnevik to take a leading position in an asset complementing our existing mobile and media companies.”

Closing is expected to occur on 4 May. The acquisition will be fully financed by cash at hand and existing credit facilities and capital market programs.

Categories: News


Telia Company to acquire Fält Communications AB


Telia Company accelerates its activities within the Smart Cities space by acquiring Fält Communications AB (Fältcom), a leading and well established company in the growing Nordic connected public transportation market.

“Fältcom is a market leader in Scandinavia and has recently seen early success internationally. The combination of great products and services, and talented and passionate people, will position the combined companies to become the leading provider of Smart Public Transport services whilst laying a foundation for further expansion in the Smart Transport & Logistics and Smart City space,” says Brendan Ives, Head of Telia Company’s emerging businesses unit Division X, and continues: “This is also fully in line with our ambition to find digital solutions to societal challenges such as climate change while making cities more liveable”

Swedish company Fältcom was founded in 1998 and is headquartered in Umeå. The company has roughly 40 employees. Fältcom’s systems make it possible for customers to monitor and control devices in one place on the globe from another. The company today has more than 160,000 installations, of which 40,000 are online, in buildings, vehicles, and customized IoT solutions. Fältcom is the market leader in Scandinavia for mobile platforms on buses, and every speed camera in Sweden is equipped with its technology. For 2016, Fältcom had preliminary revenues of SEK 83 million.

Fältcom’s main owners SEB Venture Capital and Nordic VC Industrifonden together own 93 percent of Fältcom and the employees own the remaining 7 percent. The acquisition is expected to close in February. The parties have agreed not to disclose the purchase price.

“Fältcom and Telia Company share a common belief that open platforms and ecosystems are key to unleashing the endless possibilities of IoT. Having achieved a market leading position, we are really excited to be part of Telia Company. Together we’ll strengthen our market position, open up significant growth potential and accelerate the rate at which we can create value for our customers and partners,” says Mikael Långström, CEO of Fältcom.

Categories: News


AddSecure sold to ABRY Partners

Viking Venture is pleased to announce the sale of portfolio company AddSecure to ABRY Partners, a Boston US based private equity firm. AddSecure is the Nordic market leader providing secure mission-critical machine to machine communications for security and other applications across a wide range of verticals including healthcare, public safety, transportation and utilities. 

AddSecure manages a highly secure communications platform enabling the automated control and remote monitoring and management of sensors and other devices deployed in the field.

The company was established after the merger of the Viking Venture backed company Safetel AS and Multicom Security in 2014. Safetel AS was founded in 2000 based on a fundamental belief that mobile communication networks would be well suited to provide secure critical communication. Safetel received funding from Viking Venture, B. Skaugen AS and Follum Invest and grew quickly to become a strong Nordic player.

Following the merger, AddSecure has grown into employing around 120 people, having 120,000+ active subscribers and a strong network of over 1,000+ channel partners in Norway and Sweden. The company had revenues of SEK 374 mill. in 2015 with an EBITDA of SEK 124 mill.

“AddSecure is a great example of how we can develop world class Norwegian technology into internationally leading businesses through organic and inorganic growth”, said Erik Hagen, Managing Partner at Viking Venture.

“AddSecure has managed to achieve a unique position within the Scandinavian secure communications market. Scandinavian tech companies are at the forefront of global development, and we truly believe AddSecure has the potential to establish itself as an international M2M communications player in the coming years”, said Rob Nicewicz, Principal at ABRY Partners.

Read more in Adresseavisen June 17 2016 (only in Norwegian).

About Viking Venture
Viking Venture is one of the leading Nordic venture funds and invests in growth companies within IT and Oil and Gas with a potential to grow internationally. Viking Venture is managing funds with NOK 1.4 and has invested in 40 companies. Viking Venture is based in Trondheim, Norway and has presence in the US and the UK. See www.vikingventure.com.

About AddSecure
AddSecure is a leading Nordic company within secured critical communication systems. The business emerged at the beginning of the 1970s and has today more than 100 000 business clients and 120 employees in Scandinavia. The company’s communications services for alarm and mobile data protects life, property and public functions. The offered solutions are flexible, easy to install and increases the clients’ competitive strength. The ambition is to be the preferred choice in the Nordics and a leading player in the Northern Europe. For more information please visit www.addsecure.com

About ABRY Partners
Founded in 1989, ABRY Partners is one of the most experienced and successful media, communications, business and information services focused private equity investment firms in North America. Since its founding, ABRY has completed over $61 billion of transactions, representing investments in over 550 properties.

Contact persons:
Erik Hagen, Managing Partner Viking Venture +47 920 22 430

Categories: News