Home Industry Deals BigAir acquires IIPC for $20 million

Wireless broadband specialist BigAir has continued its acquisition spree with the purchase of WA regional provider IIPC.

BigAir’s previous acquisitions include Link Innovations and Allegro Networks. It operates wireless broadband networks in Australia’s capital cities and larger regional centres, and has an avowed strategy of expansion through acquisition.

Chairman Paul Tyler said IIPC (Intelligent IP Communication) is BigAir’s largest and most significant acquisition to date. “IIPC brings a new dimension to the BigAir. We believe its services are highly complementary with our existing network service offerings and customer assets.

IIPC provides BigAir with a foothold in the remote mining camp market through a customer base that includes several major mining sites. IIPC provides microwave backhaul along with fibre distribution networks within mining camps, including head end infrastructure to provide IPTV, Internet and phones in each room.

Tyler said BigAir had identified this market as having a number of operational synergies with its existing tertiary education accommodation division BigAir Community Broadband, which provides managed Internet services to university accommodation residences in Australia, servicing approximately 30,000 students.

“We expect substantial synergy between these two divisions. IIPC has many years’ experience in building microwave networks. Its assets include an extensive microwave footprint stretching approximately 1900 km from Geraldton to Albany in Western Australia, which will further reinforce BigAir’s position as the leading fixed wireless network operator to the business and wholesale markets across Australia.”

IIPC generated revenues of $9.2 million and EBITDA of $1.4 million last financial year. Tyler said that following a period of integration, IIPC is expected to contribute more than $3 million in annualised EBITDA. BigAir will acquire IIPC for an up front consideration of $10 million, with a further $10 million to be paid based on future performance.

IIPC was founded in 2005. It will now operate as a wholly owned subsidiary within BigAir . Co-founders Doug Childress and Jonathan Matthews will remain with IIPC on two year employment agreements. IIPC has more than 550 customers, including organisations involved in mining, retail, franchising, tourism, manufacturing and service industries.

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Graeme Philipson

Graeme Philipson is senior associate editor at iTWire and editor of sister publication CommsWire. He is also founder and Research Director of Connection Research, a market research and analysis firm specialising in the convergence of sustainable, digital and environmental technologies. He has been in the high tech industry for more than 30 years, most of that time as a market researcher, analyst and journalist. He was founding editor of MIS magazine, and is a former editor of Computerworld Australia. He was a research director for Gartner Asia Pacific and research manager for the Yankee Group Australia. He was a long time IT columnist in The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald, and is a recipient of the Kester Award for lifetime achievement in IT journalism.

 

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