Stonepeak Infrastructure Partners acquires Xplornet Communications

Xplornet Communications Inc. (Xplornet), Canada’s largest rural-focused broadband service provider, completed its sale to Stonepeak Infrastructure Partners (Stonepeak), an infrastructure-focused private equity firm based in New York with a history of investing in mission-critical telecommunications businesses. WaveDivision Capital, a fund controlled by Xplornet’s chairman Steve Weed, remains a minority investor in Xplornet. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. 

The new capital provided by Stonepeak will allow Xplornet to execute its plan of expanding coverage, increasing investment and improving its national hybrid fibre wireless and satellite broadband network for rural Canadians. In addition, Xplornet’s mobility business in Manitoba and certain non-core spectrum licences were spun out to Xplornet’s shareholders and warrantholders prior to the closing. 

Christine J. Prudham, chief legal and regulatory officer, led as in-house counsel for Xplornet.

Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP also represented Xplornet with a team led by Cameron Rusaw and Kevin Greenspoon and including Gilles Comeau, Daniel Pearlman, Marc Pontone, Avani Verma and Harrison Nemirov (corporate/M&A); Scott Hyman, David Wilson and Evan Kenyon (banking); Chris Anderson, Julie Colden and Ryan Abrahamson (tax); and Mark Katz and Dajena Pechersky (regulatory).

Goodmans LLP represented Xplornet’s management team with a team including Neil Sheehy, Kirk Rauliuk and Daniel Seidman (corporate/M&A) and Michael Royal (tax).

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP acted as U.S. counsel to Stonepeak with a team led by Eli Hunt and including Lauren Kim (corporate/M&A); Brian Gluck, Dean Masuda and Elizabeth Pica (banking); Jonathan Goldstein, Sarah Katz and Zachary Fialkow (tax); Tristan Brown and Alexander Ellebracht (executive compensation and employee benefits); and Steven DeLott (insurance).

Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP acted as Canadian counsel to Stonepeak with a team led by Geoffrey Belsher and Paul Singh and including Hani Migally, Zach Mammon, Conor Gordon and Jory Binder (corporate/M&A); Michael Matheson, Auriol Marasco and Stacey Conway (banking); Jeffrey Shafer and Casey Richardson-Scott (tax); Lindsay McLeod and Holly Reid (executive compensation and employment); Julie Soloway, David Dueck and Gillian Singer (competition and foreign investment); and Sunny Handa, Celine Poitras and Renee Tousignant (telecommunications regulatory).