Feb. 06, 2006
Sumitomo Corporation strengthen its involvement into Enforta, a Russia-Based Wireless Broadband Service Provider
Sumitomo Corporation (hereafter referred to as "Sumitomo") subscribed newly issued share from a new telecommunications operator in Russia along with one of the largest Private Equity Fund in Russia and strengthen its involvement in Wireless Broadband Business in Russia.
Specifically, Sumitomo along with Baring Vostok Capital Partners subscribed third-party allocation of shares from the Netherlands-based Enforta B.V. (Head Office: Amsterdam, the Netherlands) in the November of last year which has full ownership of Prestige Internet (President: Lee Sparkman, CEO Viktor Ratnikov ; Head Office: Moscow, Russia), a wireless broadband service company that has started commercial operation in 2 cities in Russia.
This is the 2nd subscription for Sumitomo and Sumitomo provided the initial funding for Enforta in Early 2005.
Prestige Internet plans to expand its network to 14 cities by the first half of this year with this increased capital.
WiMAX technology enables last-mile high-speed wireless access for home and business users. Russia, in particular, has seen significant delays in the spreading of wired broadband services because of low population densities, difficulties in laying complex wired circuit facilities, and the lack of quality in existing communication lines. The use of WiMAX technology is anticipated to resolve this issue by providing access to broadband access in a simple and cost-efficient manner.
Baring Vostok Capital Partners is the manager of three private equity funds. The NIS Fund (1994 with $160 million) was one of the first or largest shareholders in a number of Russian or CIS companies including: Burren Energy, Syktyvkar Forestry, Golden Telecom, Vimpelcom, Sladco, Borjomi, and Rogan Brewery. To date, the NIS Fund has been the number one performing Russian private equity fund and its results place it in the top quartile of global private equity funds over the same period. BVCP raised a second fund in 2000 (the Baring Vostok Private Equity Fund) with $205 million in capital and its third fund in 2004 (the Baring Vostok Private Equity Fund III) with $400 million in capital. Today, BVCP's funds own significant stakes in Europlan Leasing, CTC Media, Golden Telecom, Burren Energy, Spassk Cement, PPE Group, Yandex, Ozon, Rusfinance, and Caspian Gas Corporation. The Funds' shareholders are primarily institutional investors from Europe, North America, the Middle East and Asia.