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Crown Castle Borrows $1.65 Billion to Finance T-Mobile Purchase

Crown Castle International Corp. sold $1.65 billion of bonds to help finance the purchase of rights to operate cellular towers of Deutsche Telekom AG’s T-Mobile USA.

The junk-rated provider of infrastructure for wireless communications issued the 5.25 percent, senior unsecured notes due in 2023 to yield 363 basis points more than similar-maturity Treasuries, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The company will use proceeds from the offering, along with cash and funds from its revolving credit line, to finance the deal, Houston-based Crown Castle said today in a statement.

T-Mobile USA, the fourth-largest U.S. carrier, agreed last month to sell the rights to operate 7,200 towers for $2.4 billion. Crown Castle will have the exclusive right to lease and operate the antenna towers for about 28 years, with the option to acquire them at the end of the lease, according to a Sept. 28 statement.

Moody’s Investors Service said in a report today that it will grade the new bonds B1, signaling the debt is subject to a high degree of credit risk, while Standard & Poor’s said it will rate them two steps lower at B-.

Deutsche Telekom is combining its U.S. mobile business with MetroPCS Communications Inc., the companies said in a statement today.

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