LONDON, 24 November 2020, Global Switch (“Global Switch” or “the Company”), the leading owner, operator and developer of large-scale network dense, carrier and cloud neutral multi-tenanted data centres in Europe and Asia-Pacific, announces today that Jiangsu Shagang Group Co., Ltd (“Shagang”), has advised the Company of its intention to pursue a reorganisation of the shareholdings in Global Switch. Upon completion of the proposed reorganisation the Company’s 51% direct shareholder, Elegant Jubilee Limited, would become a wholly owned indirect subsidiary of Jiangsu Shagang Co., Ltd (“JS Co.”), a Shenzhen Stock Exchange quoted (stock code 002075.SZ) subsidiary of Shagang. Shagang, a member of the Fortune Global 500 list of the world’s biggest companies, will remain the Company’s controlling shareholder.
The reorganisation will provide enhanced liquidity for certain of Global Switch’s current investors, via JS Co.’s listing in Shenzhen - one of the world’s largest bourses, with an annual trading value of over USD10 trillion. It will also provide enhanced access to the global capital markets to support Global Switch’s future growth ambitions.
Under the terms of the proposed transaction, known as a Material Asset Restructuring, the Company has been informed that JS Co. will launch an offer to acquire the entire equity share capital of Suzhou Qingfeng Investment Management Co. Ltd, an on-shore PRC investment vehicle that is currently owned by a consortium of private and institutional investors, is controlled by Shagang and owns 100% of Elegant Jubilee Limited. The share acquisition is intended to be predominantly settled with the issuance of new shares by JS Co. which would then be admitted for trading on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange. The proposed transaction does not constitute a change of control of Global Switch and accordingly all of the Company’s existing debt financing structures are unaffected and will remain unchanged.
The Company has been advised by Shagang that the transaction is targeted to complete in H1 2021, subject to relevant shareholder, China Securities Regulatory Commission and other customary regulatory approvals. Following the transaction, the Company will explore further options in order to introduce liquidity for all its shareholders.
Shagang has confirmed to the Company that there will be no changes to the strategic direction, management or financial and operational policies of Global Switch, reflecting its continued confidence in the business model, strategy and management team and in line with the commitments enshrined in the Company’s Shareholders’ Agreement.
Global Switch will henceforth provide more frequent reporting of its performance and financial results as a result of becoming a consolidated subsidiary of a Shenzhen Stock Exchange listed entity. As announced earlier today, Corporate Governance has also been further enhanced with the appointment of Liew Fui Kiang as an independent non-executive director of the Company.
Commenting on the proposed shareholding reorganisation, John Corcoran, Chief Executive Officer of Global Switch said:
“As Global Switch continues to expand its market-leading offering across Europe and Asia-Pacific, the proposed restructuring by Shagang, our controlling shareholder, is a welcome development, which will deliver liquidity for investors and further enhanced corporate governance and disclosure requirements for the benefit of all our stakeholders. The Shenzhen Stock Exchange is one of the fastest growing international exchanges in the world, and as we continue to focus on serving global customers from east and west in an increasingly data-led global economy, this provides a strong platform from which to build, particularly as we grow our operations in Asia-Pacific, the world’s fastest growing data centre market”.
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About Global Switch
Global Switch is the leading owner, operator and developer of large-scale, carrier and cloud neutral, multi-customer data centres in Europe and Asia-Pacific. Founded in 1998, Global Switch has a proven business model, demonstrable track record and is one of the highest credit rated data centre companies in the world with investment grade credit ratings from Fitch Ratings, Moody’s and S&P Global Ratings.
Global Switch is a vital strategic partner for customers that require secure and resilient data centre services with scalable capacity and a high-level of customer service. The Company's focus is on highly resilient, central, low latency, network dense locations in prime city centre locations and internet hubs close to its customers on the edge of financial and business districts. Global Switch’s data centres operate exclusively in the Tier I markets of Europe and Asia-Pacific to Tier III or higher and currently total around 390,000 sq m (4,200,000 sq ft) of floor space and are occupied by a broad range of customers, global and national, large and small including government organisations, financial institutions, enterprises, global systems integrators, telecommunication carriers, cloud and managed service providers and other hosting businesses.
For more information visit: www.globalswitch.com.
About Shagang Group
Jiangsu Shagang Group Co., Ltd is a company established in the People’s Republic of China (PRC), has been a Fortune Global 500 company since 2009 and was ranked 351 in 2020. The Company currently possesses total assets of RMB290 billion (£33 billion) and has more than 40,000 employees.
The Company is the largest private steel maker in the PRC engaged in the manufacturing and sale of steel products. Its main products include heavy-wide plate, hot strip, cold strip, wire rod, coiled bar, ribbed bar and special bar quality steel, and it offers over 150 series with 14,000 varieties and 6,000 specifications. With iron and steel manufacturing as its main business, Shagang Group produced 33.3 million tons of iron, 41.1 million tons of steel and 40.5 million tons of rolled products in 2019.
Shagang Group has also expanded into non-steel businesses including resources and energy, trade logistics, finance, investments and data centres. Amongst its resources business interests, Shagang Group holds a 46.68% stake in Grange Resources Limited, an ASX listed iron ore producer in Australia. Shagang Group serves both domestic and international markets covering Asia, Europe, American, Oceania, Africa and more than 90 countries and regions.