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UAE giant makes $60M re-entry in Türkiye after 2-decade absence

UAE giant makes $60M re-entry in Türkiye after 2-decade absence Customers use their mobile phones outside an Etisalat store in Dubai in July 2012 (Reuters Photo)
By Newsroom
Jun 27, 2024 10:45 AM

In 2005, the United Arab Emirates-based tech giant formerly known as Etisalat reentered the Turkish market with a significant acquisition, after a two-decade absence from major investments in Türkiye.

Operating across 32 countries in Africa and the Middle East, Emirates Telecommunications Group Company (e&) – known as Etisalat – swiftly entered Türkiye’s information technology infrastructure sector by acquiring GlassHouse, a key service provider in Türkiye. The acquisition, finalized yesterday, involved a $60 million payment to investment fund Mediterra Capital.


Established in 2004 to offer specialized data backup, archiving, and storage solutions across Türkiye and the EMEA region, GlassHouse has grown its clientele to around 2,000 entities in sectors such as banking, technology, telecommunications, public services, aviation and defense. Under Mediterra Capital’s ownership since 2018, the Istanbul-based firm has tripled its revenue over six years and expanded its presence with offices in Qatar and South Africa.

e&, also known as Etisalat

Initially founded in 1976 and rebranded as Etisalat in 2022, the parent company, owned by the UAE government with shares traded on the Abu Dhabi Stock Exchange, concluded last year with a turnover of $14 billion. Operating in nearly 20 countries from Benin to Burkina Faso, Egypt to Pakistan, Afghanistan to Saudi Arabia, the company showed significant interest in Türkiye during its Etisalat years.

In 2005, it participated in the privatization of Türk Telekom, withdrawing from the auction in the seventh round, stating, “We congratulate our competitor.” Oger Telecom won the bid with an offer of $6.55 billion, later facing challenges because of developments within the Hariri family in Türkiye.

Returning as an infrastructure provider to Türkiye after approximately 20 years, the UAE-based company aims to enter Türkiye’s information technology services and cloud market with the latest digital transformation solutions.

This move not only aims to expand its cloud service portfolio and strengthen SAP capabilities but also plans to leverage GlassHouse’s SAP expertise not only in the UAE but also in Saudi Arabia. This acquisition marks a significant step for the Abu Dhabi-based company, potentially paving the way for larger investments and acquisitions in the future.

Last Updated:  Jun 27, 2024 1:06 PM