Nigeria's MainOne will join Equinix in Q1 2022 through an acquisition deal worth over $320 million.

Equinix Inc, the world's digital infrastructure company™ today announced that it will acquire MainOne, a leading African data center and connectivity solutions provider with presence in Nigeria, Ghana, Mauritius and Côte d'Ivoire for $320 million.

Founded by Funke Opeke in 2010, MainOne has enabled connectivity for the African ecosystem including the then Andela campus in Nigeria, the Cooperate Affairs Commission, Stanbic IBTC Bank amongst others. Currently, it has digital infrastructure assets including three operational data centers, with an additional facility under construction expected to open in Q1 2022.

Under the terms of the agreement, Equinix intends to acquire MainOne and its assets with an all-cash transaction at an enterprise value of US$320M, which is expected to be AFFO accretive upon close, excluding integration costs. According to Equinix the transaction is expected to close Q1 of 2022, however its "subject to the satisfaction of customary closing conditions including the requisite regulatory approvals".

Charles Meyers, President and CEO, Equinix said that "the acquisition of MainOne will represent a critical point of entry for Platform Equinix into the expansive and rapidly growing African market. MainOne's leading interconnection position and experienced management team represent critical assets in our aspirations to be the leading neutral provider of digital infrastructure in Africa".

"Growth of data consumption in Africa is amongst the fastest in the world, and our customers are looking for a trusted partner to pursue the opportunities presented by broad mobile adoption and greater connectivity across the region. MainOne's infrastructure, customer relationships, partner ecosystem and operating capability will extend the reach of Platform Equinix and bolster opportunities for customers in Africa and throughout the world", Meyers said.

Founded in Silicon Valley in 1998 as a vendor-neutral multitenant data center provider where competing networks could securely connect and share data traffic, Equinix currently has over 220 data centers in 60 markets on five continents connect enterprises, networks, services and innovators from Mumbai to Dublin, Singapore to Chicago, and Helsinki to San José.

Equinix said expanding into Africa has long been a strategic priority and with the acquisition of MainOne, "we have found a company that not only has highly complementary data center and connectivity assets, but can further accelerate the expansion of our business model and growth objectives".

Timeline of MainOne's activities. Source: MainOne

Reacting to the announcement, Funke Opeke, Founder and CEO, MainOne stated that, "Equinix will accelerate our long-term vision to grow digital infrastructure investments across Africa".

"With similar values and culture to what we have jointly built in twelve years, Equinix is the preferred partner for our growth journey. The MainOne team is excited about the partnership created through the acquisition, and we look forward to building our next chapter together", Opeke added.

As part of the acquisition deal, the management team at MainOne including Funke Opeke, will continue to serve in their respective roles. Opeke holds a master's in engineering from Columbia University and was named one of the World's Top 50 Women in Tech by Forbes in 2018 for her efforts in sparking internet adoption. She was also recently named one of the Top 10 Women to Watch in the Data Center Industry by Data Centre Magazine.

What are MainOne's assets?

MainOne has an extensive submarine network extending 7,000 kilometers from Portugal to Lagos, Accra and along the west African coast, with landing stations in Nigeria, Ghana and Côte d'Ivoire, as well as a terrestrial network of more than 1,200 kilometers of reliable terrestrial fiber in Lagos, Edo and Ogun States with connectivity to terrestrial sites extends across 65 points of presence in cities across Portugal, Nigeria, Ghana and Cote d'Ivoire.

With over 500 employees, these facilities generate approximately $60 million annualized revenue.