Morgan Stanley India acquires stake in iBus for $21 million

  • iBus intends to use the raised capital to support its business expansion plans and working capital requirements to scale its service across the country.
  • It currently serves more than 4 million customers in 10 cities and deploys its infra at 233 commercial, residential and retail sites across the country.
  • The startup offers IBS and last-mile connectivity solutions and acts as a neutral connectivity infrastructure provider for mobile operators.

Morgan Stanley-owned Morgan Stanley India Infrastructure announced, it has acquired an undisclosed percentage of stake in iBus Network and Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd. for $21 million (Rs 150 crore).

iBus intends to use the raised capital to support its business expansion plans and working capital requirements to scale the indoor wireless coverage to 400 million sq. ft. in the next few years to cover over 7 million people in the country, the statement said.

Earlier in January 2016, It had raised $2.2 million in a Series A funding round led by N Squared Management and Vallabh Bhanshali (Chairman of Enam Holdings). According to the press statement, Mumbai-based Cipher-Plexus Capital Advisors was the exclusive advisor for this transaction.

Founded in 2010 by Sunil Memon and Ram Sellaratnam, and Subash Vasudevan, iBus is a Bangalore-based telecommunication services provider that offers in-building wireless solutions (“IBS”), outdoor small cells, and other last-mile connectivity solutions to mobile operators.

It currently deploys its infrastructure across 233 commercial, residential and retail sites across the country with a tenanted area of 276 million sq. ft. 

Commenting on the development, Co-founders in a combined statement, said, “We at iBus welcome Morgan Stanley India Infrastructure as an equity partner for the strength of experience in helping companies build scale.” 

“Connectivity is fundamental to large developing digital economies like India and our mission is to build an end-to-end intelligent, scalable and convergent connectivity ecosystem. With this investment, iBus will build scale and eliminate inefficiencies to fast track the essential digitalization of our economy”, they added.

Speaking on the investment, Raja Parthasarathy, Managing Director and Co-Head of Morgan Stanley India Infrastructure, said, “We are excited to partner with a management team that is establishing itself as the in-building solutions partner of choice for telecom operators.  Our investment will allow iBus to drive consolidation and scale in a fragmented industry while enhancing the mobile user experience.”

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