Horizon Capital, a leading private equity firm in Emerging Europe, has increased its stake in Datagroup, Ukraine’s leading fiber infrastructure and digital services provider, from 73.46% to 96.13%, via its $370 million fund, Emerging Europe Growth Fund II, L.P. (EEGF II). EEGF II is pleased to be the sole investor in Datagroup, alongside CEO Mykhailo Shelemba, who holds 3.87%. As a result of this transaction, the Company’s founder Oleksandr Kardakov, and other minority investors, have fully exited Datagroup. Financial details of this deal were not disclosed.
“We are delighted to deepen our commitment even further to Datagroup, and to the telecom sector in Ukraine. Since assuming operational control of the Company in 2016, Datagroup has completed a full business turnaround, reducing net debt to EBITDA by 9 times to a low 0.3 level today, and delivering over 20% compound annual growth in EBITDA. Datagroup continues to invest heavily into CAPEX, embarking on a network modernization program that will enhance further the high quality of services and innovation provided to its valued clients. Under Mykhailo Shelemba’s exceptional leadership, Datagroup has boosted its position in B2B, wholesale, international traffic and satellite communication segments, and is poised to deliver continued solid growth, both organically and through M&A”, said Horizon Capital Principal Dmytro Boroday, who leads this transaction at Horizon Capital.
“We are especially excited about the future possibilities for Datagroup against the backdrop of Ukraine’s ambitious digitalization agenda, with the country ranking near the top globally for issuance of digital passports and driver’s licenses, and many impressive initiatives underway”, added Lenna Koszarny, Horizon Capital’s Founding Partner and Chief Executive Officer. “We firmly believe that Datagroup’s market leadership and technical excellence, alongside these extensive digitalization efforts underway in Ukraine, position the Company for sustained, long-term growth amidst global fixed mobile convergence trends. I take this opportunity to thank Mr. Oleksandr Kardakov for our cooperation over the years, and, for founding this national champion back in 2000, and pioneering the development of the industry since then. We wish him great success in his future endeavors!”
Oleksandr Kardakov, founder and former shareholder of Datagroup, said: “I am proud of the Company’s results and the successful transformation that has taken place over the past four years. I am pleased that the Company has strengthened its partnership with Horizon Capital, an investor that has backed Datagroup for many years, and wish them success in their strategic ambitions. I am confident that, together with management, they will take Datagroup forward to a new stage of growth and development.”
Mykhailo Shelemba, Datagroup Chief Executive Officer and shareholder, added further: “I am truly grateful to Horizon Capital for the trust and support during the Company's transformation. We have achieved stellar results, with bold plans underway to expand and modernize Datagroup’s infrastructure, enhance services for our customers and further grow our business. Ukraine is rapidly digitizing its government and its economy, our entire Datagroup team recognize our important role in contributing to this transformation. I thank Oleksandr Kardakov for his contribution as a founding shareholder, and for his support during these pivotal years as Datagroup evolved into the dynamic business that it is today."