Rogers Closes $2.1 Billion in Financing to Fund 700MHz License Purchases

by Istvan Fekete on March 11, 2014

Canada’s No. 1 wireless player, Rogers, has announced that it has closed previously announced CAD$ and US$ financing transactions of roughly $2.1 billion. The carrier will use the net proceedings of these financings, alongside cash on hand and other available debit, to fund the recently acquired 20-year licences for two contiguous, paired blocks of lower-band spectrum purchased in the recent 700 MHz spectrum auction.

“We went after and won this spectrum because we know it will pay off for our customers for the next 20 years and likely beyond. Not only did we get the spectrum we wanted for our customers, but we have financed it with $2.1 billion of long term funding for up to 30 years at some of our lowest rates ever, with an average interest rate of just 3.9%. In addition, we have made this long term investment for our customers while maintaining our Baa1/BBB+/BBB+ senior credit ratings, which have been affirmed by each of Moody’s, Standard and Poor’s and Fitch, reflecting their confidence in the investment and in Rogers,” said Anthony Staffieri, Chief Financial Officer, Rogers Communications.

As the carrier had already announced, it will invest $3.29 billion to licence this valuable spectrum to bring additional benefits to its customers located both in rural and urban areas. Rogers is after acquiring two blocks of contiguous paired spectrum across virtually all key geographic markets in the country, which will allow the carrier to deploy 20 MHz of spectrum, resulting in enhanced network coverage and a better mobile video experience.

Rogers has kept important factors in mind with its 700 MHz spectrum acquisition. The LTE-capable mobile devices running on Rogers’ network already operate in the lower 700 MHz band, so by licencing spectrum in the lower band, it aims to bring additional benefits to customers as soon as the new spectrum is deployed sometime this year.

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Written by: Istvan Fekete. www.digitcom.ca. Follow TheTelecomBlog.com by: RSS, Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube.

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