A consortium led by KKR & Co. LP is in talks to acquire Indian tower companies Bharti Infratel Ltd. and Indus Towers Ltd. for $11 billion, multiple people in the know told The Economic Times (India).
The buyer group includes Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Abu Dhabi Investment Authority and GIC Singapore.
According to the report, the first step will be Bharti Infratel buying out the 58% stake it does not own in Indus Towers from shareholders including Vodafone India, Idea Cellular Ltd. and Providence Equity Partners. Bharti Infratel owns 42% of Indus Towers, which operates 123,000 towers.
Once Bharti Infratel consolidates Indus Towers, the KKR-led group will then increase its 10% interest in Bharti Infratel to become the biggest shareholder with up to a 45% stake.
The deal is expected to close within four to six weeks, the report said.