Airtel Africa Mobile Money Business Attracts Fresh $200m

July 31, 2021
Airtel Mobile Money Business

By Adedapo Adesanya

Leading African telecommunications, Airtel Africa Plc, has secured another investment worth $200 million for its mobile money business, Airtel Mobile Commerce BV (AMC BV), from Qatar Holding LLC, an affiliate of the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA).

AMC BV is the holding company for several of Airtel Africa’s mobile money operations and ultimately is intended to own and operate the mobile money businesses across all of Airtel Africa’s fourteen operating countries.

The company revealed that it is set to receive the fund into AMC BV through a secondary purchase of shares from Airtel Africa from QIA, the sovereign wealth fund of the State of Qatar which has over $300 billion in assets.

The deal will be closed in two tranches, $150 million invested at the first in August, subject to customary closing conditions including necessary regulatory filing.

The remaining $50 million will be invested at the second tranche once further transfers of certain mobile money operations and contracts into the AMC BV perimeter have been completed.

The new $200 million for its mobile money business brings total investment to $500 million and with the investment, QIA will hold a minority stake while Airtel Africa continues to hold the majority stake.

The transaction still values Airtel Africa at $2.65 billion on a cash and debt-free basis like other deals. However, QIA is entitled to appoint a director to AMC BV’s board and has certain customary information and minority protection rights.

Speaking on the development, Mr Raghunath Mandava, CEO of Airtel Africa, stated that, “With today’s announcement, we are pleased to welcome QIA as a prospective investor in our mobile money business, joining both Mastercard and TPG’s The Rise Fund as a further partner to help us realize the full potential from the substantial opportunity to bank the unbanked across Africa.”

On his part, Mr Mansoor bin Ebrahim Al-Mahmoud, CEO of QIA, said, “We are delighted to build on our support of Airtel Africa in promoting financial inclusion to the large and growing population of Sub-Saharan Africa.

“Airtel Money plays a critical role in facilitating economic activity, including for customers without access to traditional financial services. We firmly believe in its mission to expand these efforts over the coming years.”

Adedapo Adesanya

Adedapo Adesanya is a journalist, polymath, and connoisseur of everything art. When he is not writing, he has his nose buried in one of the many books or articles he has bookmarked or simply listening to good music with a bottle of beer or wine. He supports the greatest club in the world, Manchester United F.C.

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