11 November 2021  |  Schiphol

DIF Capital Partners closes its ESG equity bridge facility

DIF Capital Partners (“DIF”) is pleased to announce that it has increased its equity bridge facility with ESG linked performance criteria to EUR 900 million. The facility was closed by DIF Infrastructure VI (“DIF VI”) and is provided by a club of banks comprising ABN AMRO, Rabobank, BMO, CIBC, ING Bank and CBA, with ABN AMRO acting as agent.

This is DIF’s first ESG equity bridge facility, evidencing the company’s desire to positively contribute to a sustainable future for the environment and society in general. The facility contains a set of ESG KPIs related to the ESG performance of DIF as a manager and the ESG performance improvement of the underlying portfolio on key ESG areas such as safety, environment, climate resilience and community, including third party assurance.

In return, DIF VI benefits from a reduction in margin on the facility upon meeting those KPIs, reflecting the lenders’ own ESG support and commitment to a sustainable future.

“We are delighted to be working again with our long term partners ABN AMRO, Rabobank, BMO, CIBC, ING Bank and CBA in relation to this very innovative facility with clearly described ESG KPIs. This closing confirms and strengthens DIF’s position as leader in the ESG space within the private equity community and we continue to be committed to deliver a positive contribution to a sustainable future” said Robert Doekes, CFO at DIF Capital Partners.

About DIF Capital Partners

DIF Capital Partners is a leading global independent fund manager, with more than €9.0 billion in assets under management across nine closed-end infrastructure funds and several co-investment vehicles. DIF Capital Partners invests in greenfield and operational infrastructure assets located primarily in Europe, the Americas, and Australasia through two complementary strategies:

  • Traditional DIF funds, of which DIF Infrastructure Fund VI is the latest vintage, target equity investments with long-term contracted or regulated income streams including public-private partnerships, concessions, utilities, and (renewable) energy projects.
  • DIF CIF funds, of which DIF CIF II is the latest vintage, target equity investments in small to mid-sized economic infrastructure assets in the telecom, energy, and transportation sectors.

DIF supports the goal of Net Zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, in-line with global efforts as a result of the Paris Agreement to have net zero emissions by 2050, or sooner.

DIF Capital Partners has a team of over 170 professionals, based in ten offices located in Amsterdam (Schiphol), Frankfurt, London, Luxembourg, Madrid, New York, Paris, Santiago, Sydney, and Toronto. For more information please visit www.dif.eu.

Contact:
Allard Ruijs, IR & BD
Email: a.ruijs@dif.eu

9 November 2021  |  New York

DIF Capital Partners to invest in US fiber platform Joink

DIF Capital Partners (“DIF”), via DIF CIF II (the “Fund”), is pleased to announce that it has reached an agreement with Joink, LLC (“Joink” or the “Company”) to be its growth capital partner, opening the door to significantly more investment and growth. Joink is a telecommunications infrastructure company that currently provides enterprise fiber, residential fiber, and fixed wireless services in Western Indiana and Eastern Illinois. Subject to regulatory approval, the partnership with DIF will allow Joink to expand its fiber optic network to residential and enterprise customers at a much faster pace.

Joink started providing internet service to residents and businesses in Eastern Illinois and Western Indiana in 2001 using fixed wireless. Since 2014, the Company has expanded to serve thousands of end users in West Central Indiana with fiber, including priority infrastructure for education, healthcare, enterprise, and other telecommunications carriers. It has always been Joink’s intention to further extend its fiber to the single-family home and multi-dwelling unit offerings. Joink currently has 88 employees and growing.

“DIF believes the future fiber-to-the-home roll out is critical to ensure that residents in Indiana and Illinois have reliable high-speed internet access through Joink’s fiber network. DIF is excited to partner with a well-established fiber and fixed wireless company such as Joink and its experienced management team. Joink’s approach to investing in residential fiber infrastructure fits DIF’s ambition to invest in the US fiber industry. In addition to creating local jobs, this investment helps bridge the digital divide in online education, remote employment opportunities, telemedicine and other prospects afforded by broadband access” said Willem Jansonius, Partner and Head of Investments for the DIF CIF strategy.

“We are grateful for the support in growing our business from our team members and their families, our customers, vendors, long-term investors and financing partners, permitting authorities, state and local government, and the communities in which we live and work,” says Josh Zuerner, Joink President and CEO. “That support has enabled us to attract the investment from DIF – a world-class infrastructure investment fund. We don’t take the trust we’ve gained over the last twenty years for granted and will continue to build upon it by showcasing our unwavering commitment to high-quality Internet access.”

While DIF is investing in Joink, all existing investors will continue to remain invested in the Company. Hank Stephens, one of the earliest investors in Joink, notes, “When Brian Wick and I decided over 20 years ago to invest in a startup company in Terre Haute called Joink, we were excited about the potential Joink had to provide Internet service to people with limited or no options. As we look back today, I don’t think either of us could have envisioned the tremendous impact that Joink would ultimately have on the residents and businesses of West Central Indiana. We are grateful to the Joink employees as well as our fellow investors who have helped get Joink to where it is today and are excited about this new partnership and opportunity to expand further.”

Cowen and Company served as financial advisor to Joink. Agentis Capital served as financial advisor to DIF.

About Joink

Joink is Midwest’s leading providers of wireless Internet service in rural markets in Indiana and Illinois. Joink has installed over 540 miles of fiber in the five-county area and offers service to enterprise, commercial, carrier, and residential customers. Joink’s main fiber network ring connects Vigo, Vermillion, Parke, and Clay County. It also has fiber-optic assets throughout Sullivan County. Joink operates over 100 fixed-wireless transmit points. Building and maintaining a large network requires tremendous knowledge and expertise, and customers grew to recognize and count on that expertise. As a result, they increasingly leaned on Joink to assist them when faced with technology challenges. Joink addresses these challenges through its Hosting, Technology Services, and Managed Services divisions. Last year, the State of Indiana awarded seven Indiana Next Level Connects Projects to Joink.  Additionally, Vigo County Government and the City of Terre Haute supported the Vigo County School Corporation in extending Joink’s network to 84 community access locations. More info: http://www.joink.com

About DIF Capital Partners

DIF Capital Partners is a leading global independent fund manager, with more than €9.0 billion in assets under management across nine closed-end infrastructure funds and several co-investment vehicles. DIF Capital Partners invests in greenfield and operational infrastructure assets located primarily in Europe, the Americas, and Australasia through two complementary strategies:

  • Traditional DIF funds, of which DIF Infrastructure Fund VI is the latest vintage, target equity investments with long-term contracted or regulated income streams including public-private partnerships, concessions, utilities, and (renewable) energy projects.
  • DIF CIF funds, of which DIF CIF II is the latest vintage, target equity investments in small to mid-sized economic infrastructure assets in the telecom, energy, and transportation sectors.

DIF supports the goal of Net Zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, in-line with global efforts as a result of the Paris Agreement to have net zero emissions by 2050, or sooner.

DIF Capital Partners has a team of over 170 professionals, based in ten offices located in Amsterdam (Schiphol), Frankfurt, London, Luxembourg, Madrid, New York, Paris, Santiago, Sydney, and Toronto. For more information please visit www.dif.eu.

Contact:
Allard Ruijs, IR & BD
Email: a.ruijs@dif.eu

9 August 2021  |  Toronto

DIF Capital Partners signs agreement with Canada Infrastructure Bank for further investments in rural Manitoba in partnership with Valley Fiber

DIF Capital Partners (“DIF”), is pleased to announce that DIF Core Infrastructure Fund II (“DIF CIF II”) and its portfolio company Valley Fiber Ltd. (“Valley Fiber”) have formalized the agreement to invest in the Manitoba Fiber Project together with the Canada Infrastructure Bank (“CIB”). This agreement will significantly grow DIF CIF II’s investment in Manitoban rural communities and Valley Fiber.

Valley Fiber is a telecommunications infrastructure company and internet services provider that specializes in the development, construction, and operations of fiber and fixed wireless infrastructure for residential and commercial use. Valley Fiber was incorporated in 2016 and has successfully built a presence in Manitoba, constructing high-quality telecommunications infrastructure to service historically underserved rural Manitoban communities. Based in Winkler, Manitoba, Valley Fiber operates in more than 20 municipalities.

In April 2020, DIF CIF II completed a majority investment into Valley Fiber. Since this investment, Valley Fiber has expanded and enhanced its product offering and further grown its geographical footprint. The agreement with CIB will enable a broadband infrastructure project that supports the economic growth for the benefit of Canadians. Furthermore, this project will expand Valley Fiber’s reach by targeting to connect 48,500 households with dedicated fiber-to-the-home in Manitoban rural municipalities over the coming years.

Willem Jansonius, Head of DIF CIF, said: “The collaboration with Valley Fiber and CIB have proven to be very successful and this investment represents our next step into the fast-growing telecom infrastructure sector.”

In addition, DIF CIF II has extended its capital commitment to Valley Fiber to fund future organic growth and add-on opportunities in the near term. Valley Fiber and DIF are committed to the partnership of bringing broadband to underserved communities in Canada.

About DIF Capital Partners

DIF Capital Partners is a leading global independent fund manager, with more than €9.0 billion in assets under management across nine closed-end infrastructure funds and several co-investment vehicles. DIF Capital Partners invests in greenfield and operational infrastructure assets located primarily in Europe, the Americas, and Australasia through two complementary strategies:

  • Traditional DIF funds, of which DIF Infrastructure Fund VI is the latest vintage, target equity investments with long-term contracted or regulated income streams including public-private partnerships, concessions, utilities, and (renewable) energy projects.
  • DIF CIF funds target equity investments in small to mid-sized economic infrastructure assets in the telecom, energy, and transportation sectors.

DIF Capital Partners has a team of over 160 professionals, based in nine offices located in Amsterdam (Schiphol), Frankfurt, London, Luxembourg, Madrid, Paris, Santiago, Sydney, and Toronto. For further information please visit www.dif.eu

Contact:

Allard Ruijs, Partner

Email: a.ruijs@dif.eu

19 August 2020  |  London

DIF Capital Partners acquires majority stake in UK fibre broadband operator

DIF Capital Partners, through its DIF Core Infrastructure Fund II (“DIF CIF II”), is pleased to announce that it has completed the acquisition of a majority stake (54%) in 4th Utility, a fibre-to-the-premise (“FTTP”) infrastructure developer and internet service provider based in Hale, Manchester (UK).

4th Utility partners with residential and commercial landlords, property developers and house builders to design, install and upgrade their properties with state-of-the-art FTTP infrastructure.

4th Utility currently operates FTTP networks within a number of residential property developments in the North of England. DIF CIF II will provide significant capital to fund a large pipeline of opportunities generated by 4th Utility with their development partners throughout the UK.

“We are excited to partner with DIF Capital Partners who share our desire to invest in high-quality fibre infrastructure providing ultrafast internet access to properties across the UK. This long-term investment allows us to expand our current platform and provide ‘full fibre’ connectivity to a significant number of new customers” comments Tony Hughes, CEO of 4th Utility.

The transaction is the first investment for DIF CIF II in the UK and its third investment in the digital infrastructure sector following recent acquisitions in Canada and France. “We are pleased to bring our experience in digital infrastructure to support 4th Utility and their management team in delivering FTTP infrastructure investment to underserved properties in the UK” comments Willem Jansonius, Head of DIF CIF.

Please visit www.the4thutility.co.uk for further information.

About DIF Capital Partners

DIF Capital Partners is a leading global independent infrastructure fund manager, with €7.5 billion of assets under management across nine closed-end infrastructure funds and several co-investment vehicles. DIF Capital Partners invests in greenfield and operational infrastructure assets located primarily in Europe, the Americas and Australasia through two complementary strategies:

  • DIF CIF funds target equity investments in small to mid-sized infrastructure assets in the telecom, energy and transportation sectors.
  • DIF Infrastructure funds target equity investments in public-private partnerships (PPP/PFI/P3), concessions, utilities and renewable energy projects with long-term contracted or regulated income streams.

DIF has a team of over 145 professionals, based in nine offices located in Amsterdam (Schiphol), Frankfurt, London, Luxembourg, Madrid, Paris, Santiago, Sydney and Toronto. Please visit www.dif.eu for further information.

Contact: Thijs Verburg, IR & BD; t.verburg@dif.eu.

21 July 2020  |  Paris

DIF Capital Partners acquires a stake in French digital infrastructure company IELO

DIF Capital Partners (“DIF”), through its DIF Core Infrastructure Fund II (“DIF CIF II”), is pleased to announce that it will invest in the French independent fiber optic operator IELO with the aim of contributing to its network roll-out in the coming years. DIF will enable IELO to build a nationwide footprint and become a leading fiber optic infrastructure operator in France, while remaining fully independent and a pure infrastructure player.

Resulting from the merger between IELO and LIAZO in 2016, the IELO group is positioned as a key player in the telecommunications sector in France. IELO’s fiber network is the highest quality urban optical network equipped with the latest technologies. It currently represents nearly 2,000 km of fiber, covering 30 metropolitan areas and connects more than 1,000 companies. Due to the significantly growing digitalisation requirements of companies the market is rapidly expanding. DIF’s capital injections will further accelerate the strong development of the fiber network of IELO in France.

As a long-term shareholder, DIF and IELO founders plan to invest together €90 million over the next few years to triple the size of IELO’s network by deploying more than 4,500 km of fiber (increasing it to 6,500 km total) in 95 French cities and economic zones. This acquisition perfectly fits CIF II’s strategy to invest in high-quality telecom infrastructure businesses.

Arthur Fernandez IELO co-founder and CEO said: “IELO is now at a turning point in its development and the long-term support provided by DIF represents a tremendous accelerator to achieve our ambitions of scaling up the strategy we have been successfully implementing in recent years. We intend to consolidate our position as a key independent wholesale operator in the fiber optics business with the aim of expanding our French client base to further gain market share.”

Thomas Vieillescazes, partner and head of DIF France added: “DIF has been investing heavily in the telecommunications sector in Europe and North America for several years, particularly in projects related to data centers and fiber optics. This investment is therefore in line with our strategy of investing in the high-potential digital infrastructure market, especially in the growing B2B business. We believe IELO, being a dedicated wholesale infrastructure provider, and the only one with a nationwide development strategy, is a perfect fit for DIF CIF II: it’s a pure infrastructure play with a greenfield component, for which DIF will bring to bear its longstanding experience in the French market. We have particular trust in IELO’s managers and their teams and are delighted to support the group in its development to become a key player in a growing market.”

About IELO

The IELO group markets enterprise access products through offers exclusively for telecom operators (the so-called “wholesale only” market). Operating its own optical cable network, IELO has an extensive coverage area covering some thirty of France’s largest conurbations, i.e. 161 municipalities in 23 departments. Since 2014, IELO has been implementing a strong strategy of rolling out its own network through an investment plan and a sustained pace of deployment, in order to extend its position in France. To find out more: www.ielo.com

About DIF Capital Partners

DIF Capital Partners is a leading global independent infrastructure fund manager, with €7.5 billion of assets under management across nine closed-end infrastructure funds and several co-investment vehicles. DIF Capital Partners invests in greenfield and operational infrastructure assets located primarily in Europe, the Americas and Australasia through two complementary strategies:

  • DIF CIF funds target equity investments in small to mid-sized infrastructure assets in the telecom, energy and transportation sectors.
  • DIF Infrastructure funds target equity investments in public-private partnerships (PPP/PFI/P3), concessions, utilities and renewable energy projects with long-term contracted or regulated income streams.

DIF has a team of over 140 professionals, based in nine offices located in Amsterdam (Schiphol), Frankfurt, London, Luxembourg, Madrid, Paris, Santiago, Sydney and Toronto. Please visit www.dif.eu for further information.

Contact: Thomas Vieillescazes, Partner; t.vieillescazes@dif.eu and Thijs Verburg, IR & BD; t.verburg@dif.eu.

20 April 2020  |  Toronto

DIF Capital Partners invests in Canadian fiber optic networks build out

DIF Capital Partners, through its DIF Core Infrastructure Fund II (“DIF CIF II”), is pleased to announce that it has completed a majority investment into Valley Fiber Ltd (“Valley Fiber”) to build fiber-to-the-home (“FttH”) and fiber-to-the-business (“FttB”) networks in Manitoba, Canada.

Based in Winkler, Manitoba, Valley Fiber is a telecommunications infrastructure company that specializes in the development, construction and operations of fiber and fixed-wireless infrastructure for residential and commercial use. Valley Fiber has received support from municipal and federal levels of government in Canada. DIF Capital Partners’ investment will allow Valley Fiber to connect more than 15,000 homes and businesses to fiber over the next two years. The transaction contemplates a conservative capital structure which provides additional financial resiliency in the current environment.

Valley Fiber was incorporated in 2016 and has successfully built a presence in Southern Manitoba, constructing high quality telecommunications infrastructure to service the historically underserved communities. Valley Fiber currently operates in more than 20 municipalities in Manitoba. The transaction also includes the acquisition of 40 operating fixed-wireless towers.

“The Valley Fiber team is extremely excited to have found a long-term partner that shares the same values and vision of how to bring the best-in-class fiber and telecommunication infrastructure to the region. With the support from the Canadian government and our financial partner DIF Capital Partners, we look forward to usher in a new generation of economic development and diversity to Southern Manitoba” comments Hank Wall, CEO of Valley Fiber.

The transaction is the first investment for DIF CIF II and underlines the key strategic focus to invest in digital infrastructure. “We are pleased with our long-term investment into the Valley Fiber platform for the roll out of fiber in rural Canada. This is an excellent opportunity for DIF CIF II to invest in a high growth company with a strong management team and to further expand our presence into the fast-growing telecom infrastructure sector” comments Willem Jansonius, Head of DIF CIF.

DIF Capital Partners was advised by Agentis Capital (financial) and Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg (legal).

About DIF Capital Partners

DIF Capital Partners is a leading global independent infrastructure fund manager, with €6.7 billion of assets under management across nine closed-end infrastructure funds and several co-investment vehicles. DIF Capital Partners invests in greenfield and brownfield infrastructure assets located primarily in Europe, the Americas and Australasia through two complementary strategies:

  • DIF CIF funds target equity investments in small to mid-sized infrastructure assets in the telecom, energy and transportation sectors.
  • DIF Infrastructure funds target equity investments in public-private partnerships (PPP/PFI/P3), concessions, utilities and renewable energy projects with long-term contracted or regulated income streams.

DIF has a team of over 140 professionals, based in nine offices located in Amsterdam (Schiphol), Frankfurt, London, Luxembourg, Madrid, Paris, Santiago, Sydney and Toronto. Please visit www.dif.eu for further information.

Contact:
Allard Ruijs, Partner
Email: a.ruijs@dif.eu

27 November 2019  |  

DIF Capital Partners and Cinia to build out fiber optic networks in Finland

DIF Capital Partners (“DIF”), through its DIF Core Infrastructure Fund I (“DIF CIF”) is pleased to announce that it has entered into a joint venture with Cinia Oy (”Cinia”) to build fiber-to-the-home (“FttH”) networks in Finland.

The joint venture (“Adola”) plans to provide over 100,000 FttH connections to public, private and commercial customers with a focus on Finland’s underserved areas and operates under the consumer brand Täyskuitu (please refer to www.tayskuitu.fi for more information). FttH networks are a key element to enable digital development in business and society, and keep up pace with global digitalization developments. The joint venture with Cinia underlines DIF CIF’s key strategic focus to invest in digital infrastructure. The first project is expected to become operational in the first half of 2020.

DIF’s share in Adola amounts to 80.1%. The remaining 19.9% is held by Cinia, a public Finnish telecom infrastructure provider that owns and operates roughly 15,000 km of fiber optic backbone network in Northern Europe, including a high capacity submarine fiber cable to Germany.

“We are pleased to have established a long term co-operation with Cinia for the roll out of fiber in Finland. This is an excellent opportunity for DIF CIF to invest in high quality projects with a strong local partner and to further expand into the fast growing telecom infrastructure sector” comments Willem Jansonius, Head of DIF CIF.

About DIF Capital Partners

DIF is an independent infrastructure fund manager, with €6.0 billion of assets under management across eight closed-end infrastructure funds and several co-investment vehicles. DIF invests in greenfield and brownfield infrastructure assets located primarily in Europe, the Americas and Australasia through two complementary strategies:

  • DIF Infrastructure funds target equity investments in public-private partnerships (PPP/PFI/P3), concessions, utilities and renewable energy projects with long-term contracted or regulated income streams.
  • DIF CIF funds target equity investments in small to mid-sized infrastructure assets in the energy, transportation and telecom sectors with mid-term contracted income streams.

DIF has a team of over 135 professionals, based in nine offices located in Amsterdam (Schiphol), Frankfurt, London, Luxembourg, Madrid, Paris, Santiago, Sydney and Toronto. Please visit www.dif.eu for further information.

Contact:
Allard Ruijs, Partner
Email: a.ruijs@dif.eu

About Cinia

Cinia provides secure high-availability data network and software solutions. Our operations are based on our solid expertise in modern software development, data network technologies and critical operating environments. Our fiber optic network of roughly 15,000 kilometers, including the C-Lion1 submarine cable, enables the fastest data communications solutions to Central Europe and to markets in Asia and Eastern Europe. By combining our services with services of our partners, we can provide reliable and comprehensive solutions that help our customers write their own digital success stories. More information about Cinia: www.cinia.fi/en

19 December 2017  |  Paris

DIF acquires 55% stake in French fiber project from Infravia

DIF Core Infrastructure Fund I (“DIF CIF I”) and Infravia are pleased to announce that they have completed the sale of Infravia’s 55% stake in the French fiber company ADTIM.

ADTIM operates a wholesale telecom network in the Ardèche and Drôme departments under a 25-year concession awarded in 2008, which is fully operational since 2011. In December 2016, ADTIM, together with its partners Axione, Bouygues E&S and Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations, were awarded the Fiber to the Home (FttH) concession in the region. This second project plans to realize 310,000 FttH connections in association with the public local authority Syndicat mixte ADN as part of France’s 2012 Ultra-Fast Broadband Plan, the nationwide plan to implement ultra-fast internet connections across the country by 2022.

Infravia and DIF CIF I had reached an agreement on the transaction in June 2017.

InfraVia has been advised in the process by the following parties: Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP (Legal), Lazard (M&A) and H3P (Financial).

About DIF

DIF is an independent and specialist fund management company, managing funds of approximately €4.6 billion across seven closed-end investment funds and several co-investment vehicles. DIF invests in the global infrastructure market through two differentiated and complementary strategies.

DIF CIF I targets small to mid sized infrastructure assets in the telecom infrastructure, rail, energy and utility sectors that generate stable and predictable cash flows that are contracted over the mid term with highly rated entities. The fund targets both greenfield and operational projects in Europe, North America and Australasia. The fund recently reached its final close at EUR 450m. DIF’s other funds target PPP / PFI / P3, regulated infrastructure assets and renewable energy projects in Europe, North America and Australasia.

DIF has offices in Amsterdam, Frankfurt, London, Paris, Luxembourg, Madrid, Toronto and Sydney.

For more information, please contact:

Willem Jansonius, Partner
E-mail: w.jansonius@dif.eu

Allard Ruijs, Partner
E-mail: a.ruijs@dif.eu

About Infravia Capital Partners

InfraVia Capital Partners is an investment manager dedicated to the infrastructure sector. InfraVia manages EUR 1.9bn across three infrastructures funds, positioned as long-term investors and dedicated to energy and infrastructure in Europe.