Morgan Stanley and iBus Networks (“iBus”) today announced that Morgan Stanley India Infrastructure has made an investment of ₹150 Crores (US$ 21 Million) to acquire a stake in iBus. iBus offers in-building wireless solutions (“IBS”), outdoor small cells and other last-mile connectivity solutions to mobile operators to enable them to serve their customers seamlessly. The company currently deploys its infrastructure across 233 commercial, residential and retail sites across the country with a tenanted area of 276 million sq ft.
Welcoming the investment, Ram Sellaratnam, Sunil Menon and Subash Vasudevan, Co-Founders of iBus, 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. Distributed Antenna Systems such as In-Building solutions have been fragmented and silo-ed for a long time. With this investment, iBus will build scale and eliminate inefficiencies to fast track the essential digitalization of our economy”.
Cipher-Plexus Capital Advisor was the exclusive advisor for the transaction.
The company’s business model is intricately linked to India’s data consumption and digital infrastructure story. India’s per capita data consumption is the highest globally with an average monthly data consumption of 11GB per month compared to only 1 GB per month as recently as March 2017. 80% of data consumption takes place indoors where telecom coverage is least adequate and the growth in mobile data consumption and the transition to 4G / 5G requires densification of indoor telecom networks.
With the Government of India’s focus on enhancing digital infrastructure across the country, businesses such as iBus will play a critical role in building such infrastructure and further improving network capacity and coverage. The company also provides other solutions such as O-RAN deployment and data analytics, which will play an increasingly important role as the country moves towards 5G.
“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”, said Raja Parthasarathy, Managing Director and Co-Head of Morgan Stanley India Infrastructure. Founded in 2013 by three first-generation entrepreneurs, iBus previously raised capital from a number of well-known investors and family offices.
About Morgan Stanley
Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS) is a leading global financial services firm providing investment banking, securities, wealth management and investment management services. With offices in more than 41 countries, the Firm's employees serve clients worldwide including corporations, governments, institutions and individuals. For more information about Morgan Stanley, please visit www.morganstanley.com.
Morgan Stanley India Infrastructure is the India infrastructure investing platform of Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners. Part of Morgan Stanley Investment Management, Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners is a leading global infrastructure investment platform with offices in New York, London, Melbourne, Hong Kong, Amsterdam and Mumbai.
Morgan Stanley India Infrastructure has also invested in Unison Enviro Private Limited, a city gas distribution company, HealthMap Diagnostics Private Limited, which specializes in diagnostic imaging in Indian healthcare, and LEAP India Private Limited which specializes in providing supply chain solutions such as pooling of pallets.
About iBus Network and Infrastructure Limited (“iBus”)
iBus offers IBS and last-mile connectivity solutions and acts as a neutral connectivity infrastructure provider for mobile operators. iBus currently deploys IBS infrastructure across 233 commercial and retail sites in India with a tenanted area of 276MM sq ft. iBus’ last-mile connectivity solutions help mobile operators to improve network capacity and coverage. iBus Networks is an unique in-building connectivity solutions company with an emphasis to amplify benefits of convergence of intelligence, connectivity & protocols.