MTS seals €670m Ericsson vendor financing deal

Russia’s largest mobile operator, Mobile TeleSystems (MTS), has borrowed more than $1 billion (€670 million) in funds to help it buy equipment from Ericsson.
The credit line has been guaranteed by Swedish export credit agency EKN and is expected to be provided at an annual interest rate of 1.15% over the London Interbank Offered Rate (Libor).
The loans will be delivered in two tranches, with the first $429 million maturing on June 2019 and the second, of up to $646 million, maturing in September 2020.
The loans come from a pool of banks including Calyon, ING Bank, Nordea Bank and Raiffeisenbank.
The carrier will use the money build out its networks using Ericsson technology.
MTS President Mikhail Shamolin said that the long-term loans would provide the company with the required flexibility in its capital investment program over the next couple of years.
“It is our goal to take advantage of every possibility available on both voice and data markets in order to launch new innovative services,” he said.