Morgan Stanley India Infrastructure has invested INR 150 Cr (US$ 21 Million) to acquire a stake in Bengaluru-based telecommunications and connectivity services provider iBus, the company said. Morgan Stanley India Infrastructure is an India-focused private equity fund of Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners. The terms of the deal weren’t disclosed.
“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 2012, iBus is promoted and led by Ram Sellaratnam, Subash Vasudevan and Sunil Menon. It works with mobile operators and provides in-building wireless solutions, outdoor small cells and other last-mile connectivity solutions.
The company currently offers four products — iBus Talk, which offers services related to connectivity inside buildings; iBus Find, which helps collect data related to consumer patterns and digital profiling; iBus sync that offers high-speed broadband services; and iBus find which is a machine-to-machine IoT communication platform that helps devices communicate with each other.
The company has all major telecom providers as its partners. It has its infrastructure deployed across 233 commercial, residential and retail sites across the country. 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.
With this investment, iBus aims to use funds for product enhancement and expansion of its services. Cipher-Plexus Capital Advisor was the exclusive advisor for the transaction. iBus has in the past claimed that its business model is almost cost-neutral for builders with multiple builders and developers onboard.
With the lockdown forcing employees and companies to operate remotely, the need for seamless in-building connectivity for broadband and communication infrastructure has increased manifold. The communication infrastructure in India is already overworked given the sheer amount of users. The need for low latency, high-speed internet is more than ever across all domains be it for ecommerce, online transactions or remote health monitoring.
Meanwhile, Morgan Stanley India Infrastructure has also invested in Unison Enviro, a unit of Ashoka Buildcon, HealthMap Diagnostics and asset pooling company LEAP India.