Temasek leads $245m round for eMobile

The Singapore government’s investment arm has invested in eMobile, a subsidiary of Japanese broadband operator eAccess, in a transaction that marks its largest to dare in Japan.

Singapore’s Temasek Holdings is the lead investor in an equity financing round to inject an additional ¥27.3 billion ($244.5 million; €189 million) of new capital into eMobile, a wholly owned subsidiary of Japanese broadband operator eAccess.

As part of the financing, Temasek invested ¥12 billion ($107.5m; €83m) in the business for an equity stake of around 7 percent, making it the third largest shareholder, after eAccess (46.2 percent) and Goldman Sachs Group (24.percent), according to a statement.

Last year, Goldman Sachs invested around $220 million to help launch eMobile, alongside additional investments from two others including eAccess.

In this latest financing round, Goldman Sachs contributed ¥6.8 billion of new money while eAccess invested ¥5 billion. The remaining ¥3.8 billion comes from unnamed shareholders categorised as ‘others’ in the statement. eMobile’s fourth largest shareholder, Tokyo Broadcasting Systems, will hold a 6.6 percent stake once new shares resulting from the additional equity financing will be allocated.

Following the transaction, the total amount of paid-in capital will be ¥143.2 billion. Together with a recently announced ¥220 billion project finance transaction, eMobile has received a combined equity and debt capital of ¥360 billion, according to a statement from eMobile.

The company, which was granted one of three 3G licenses in Japan in November last year, aims to provide high speed mobile broadband services .

Grant Ferguson, managing director of Temasek, said in the statement that eMobile was the group’s largest investment in Japan to date.

eAccess’ CFO Eric Gan said that the management was “impressed with Temasek’s investment portfolio in many leading Asian telecommunication and media companies”.

Temasek’s portfolio includes Singapore Telecommunications, Singapore’s television and radio network MediaCorp, Thailand’s Shin Corp and India’s Tata Teleservices.