WorldLink gets funding boost of Rs1.98 billionThe investment will be used to speed up internet expansion activities across the country.
British International Investment and Dolma Impact Fund have injected the largest combined investment of Rs1.98 billion into Nepal's largest private sector internet service provider—WorldLink Communications.
Of the total amount, Rs1.08 billion comes from British International Investment, the UK Government's development finance institution, and Rs900 million from Dolma Impact.
In October 2019, British International Investment invested Rs1.35 billion in WorldLink.
With this latest series of funding, total foreign investment in the company has reached Rs3.33 billion, the largest so far in the internet service industry.
WorldLink Communications, which has more than 750,000 customers, will be using the fund to speed up its internet expansion activities across the country focusing on rural areas.
WorldLink currently provides employment to around 5,500 employees. The investment will help in creating an additional 1,000 jobs and provide skill-enhancement training for employees.
Karnali, one of the most difficult geographic terrains, has been able to get Worldlink's FTTH service.
Dileep Agrawal, chairman and managing director of WorldLink, said, “This is the outcome of our dedication for 27 years and trust in the telecom sector. We are not only feeling proud but we are committed to ensuring that we do not let our investors' trust turn down.”
Abhinav Sinha, managing director and head of Technology and Telecoms at Bays at British International Investment said, "We continue to be impressed by WorldLink's expansion and impact under the leadership of its experienced founders and the management team. Since we invested in the company in 2019, they have significantly increased its reach connecting hundreds of thousands of households and businesses to the internet.”
“Our second investment will support WorldLink to further penetrate hard-to-reach areas in Nepal with reliable and affordable internet service, creating more jobs and opportunities to stimulate growth within the economy.”
British Ambassador to Nepal, Nicola Pollitt, said, "I am delighted to see British International Investment continue its support of WorldLink as they strive to provide increased internet access across the country. Digital transformation is a key factor in sustainable economic development in Nepal and these investments are key to supporting households and businesses throughout the region."
Tim Gocher, founder and CEO at Dolma Fund Management, said, "Nepal's best chance at a short-term economic leap is its digital industry. We have seen exceptional growth in our technology investments, with quality employment for over 5,000 Nepalis.
“But these jobs are largely limited to urban areas where broadband is faster and more reliable. Our investment in WorldLink alongside our partner Hill will enable those jobs to reach more areas resulting in broader participation in the global digital economy, along with better access to health, education, financial and business-to-business services.”