A CONTINGENT of corporate, commercial, infrastructure and tax experts at UK law firm Shoosmiths have advised DIF Capital Partners (DIF) on its substantial infrastructure investment into Liberatis Limited (which trades as 4th Utility), allowing the business to majorly expand its ultrafast broadband operations.
4th Utility is an independent broadband ISP, supplying ultrafast connectivity to homes and businesses across the UK via their fibre optic network. The fibre optic network 4th Utility provides is capable of delivering ultrafast broadband speeds of up to 1Gbps to homes and businesses.
Alastair Peet, corporate partner at Shoosmiths who led the deal, supported introductions between DIF and 4th Utility.
On the deal, Alastair was supported by principal associate Helen Burnell along with corporate colleagues Marcus-Adam Tuck, Elizabeth Roberts and Sharon Nicholls and tax colleagues, partner Anika Chandra and Jamie Chambers. Partner James Wood Robertson advised on commercial infrastructure aspects and partner Gillian Wood supported on infrastructure and telecoms aspects. Legal advisors, Lauren Midgley, Pav Clair, Laura Wright and partner Mark Kramer provided data protection, employment and intellectual property advice, respectively.
Tom Goossens, managing director, head of origination – UK, Ireland and Nordics at DIF Capital Partners, said: “We are pleased to bring our experience in digital infrastructure to support 4th Utility and their management team in delivering FTTP infrastructure investment to underserved properties in the UK. We thank the Shoosmiths team for their support on this transaction."
Tony Hughes, chief executive of 4th Utility, said “We are excited to partner with DIF Capital Partners who share our desire to invest in high-quality fibre infrastructure providing ultrafast internet access to properties across the UK. This long-term investment allows us to expand our current platform and provide ‘full fibre’ connectivity to a significant number of new customers”.
Alastair Peet, Shoosmiths corporate partner, commented: “It was a pleasure to have been instructed on this deal by DIF Capital Partners who have made a substantial investment that will transform 4TH Utility’s business across the UK. This deal was another great example of the work we are doing in the broadband and fibre sector. At Shoosmiths we get to know our clients and we are very pleased that on this occasion we were able to make the right introductions allowing a deal to take place.”
James Wood-Robertson, Shoosmiths co-head of Shoosmiths infrastructure and energy sector, added: “This has been a great endorsement of our strategic approach to the infrastructure and energy sector; it has given us the opportunity to demonstrate the breadth of our expertise across different teams in the firm supporting DIF Capital Partners and, at the same time, reflects the depth of our experience in this particular area which itself is a key facet of our sector strategy.”
In addition to Shoosmiths advising DIF and Deloitte advising the company on corporate finance aspects, Eversheds advised the company on legal aspects and EY advised investors on tax elements.