EBRD supports 5G roll-out in Poland
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European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is supporting the Polish mobile network operator Play with an investment of PLN 100 million (EUR 22 million) in a senior unsecured bond in favor of the company, according to a report by the Warsaw Business Journal.
The total volume of the issuance was PLN 500 million. The bond was issued on the Polish local capital market, placed with a wide group of institutional investors, and will be listed on the Alternative Trading System of the Warsaw Stock Exchange. Santander Bank Polska acted as the arranger.
Play, the brand name of the company P4, which was recently acquired by French telecommunications challenger Iliad, is a leading mobile network operator in Poland, with more than 15 million subscribers as of June 2020 and a subscriber market share of around 28 percent. The company will invest the funds in a roll-out of 5G technology, spearheading an acceleration of digitalization across the country.
With the investment in 5G technology, which implies lower energy consumption compared to previous technologies, the company will intensify its efforts to improve the energy efficiency of its network and offer customers faster and more reliable mobile broadband.
"The coronavirus pandemic has dramatically demonstrated the need to accelerate the digitalization of the economy. Play's investment in 5G, the latest mobile communications technology, is an important step for Poland's progress with this transformation. While we are all hoping to overcome the current crisis, we can already see lasting changes through the digitalization of our economies and, for this technology, companies such as Play will be indispensable," Dirk Werner, Director, head of telecommunications, media and technology at the EBRD, commented.
Supporting the development of the local capital market, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic, is one of the EBRD's priorities in Poland. There, it engages both as a major investor and as a partner in reform dialogue, such as in the drafting of the country's capital market strategy, which was adopted in 2019. To date, the EBRD has invested EUR 10.7 billion in Poland through 455 projects.
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