Airtel Africa Raises an Additional $ 200 Million for Its Mobile Money Business from QIA – TechCrunch


Three months ago, Mastercard invested $ 100 million at Airtel Mobile Commerce BV (AMC BV), the telecommunications mobile money business Airtel Africa. This was two weeks after that too received $ 200 million from TPG’s Rise Fund.

Today, the African telecom operator announced that it has secured another investment for its mobile money arm: Qatar Holding LLC, a subsidiary of the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA).. The Middle East corporation is the sovereign wealth fund of the State of Qatar with more than $ 300 billion in assets. It is set up to invest $ 200 million in AMC BV through a purchase of Airtel Africa shares.

AMC BV is a subsidiary of Airtel Africa and the controlling company of several of Airtel Africa’s mobile money operations in 14 African countries, including Kenya, Uganda and Nigeria.. The mobile money arm operates one of the largest financial services on the continent. Provides users with access to mobile wallets, support for international money transfers, loans, and virtual credit cards..

According to a statement issued by the telecommunications operator, the investment product will be to be used Reduce debt and invest in network and sales infrastructure in the respective operating countries.. The deal will be closed in two tranches: $ 150 million invested in the first closing, most likely in August. The remaining $ 50 million be invested in the second closing.

Airtel Africa claims that QIA will have a minority stake while still holding the majority stake. This transaction still values ​​Airtel Africa at $ 2.65 billion in cash and debt free like other deals. But nevertheless, what is different this time is that QIA has the right to appoint a director to the board of AMC BV and “for certain customary information and protection rights of minorities. “

The most recent report from Airtel Africa for the first quarter of 2021 shows signs of growth. The telecoms operator experienced 53.7% year-on-year revenue growth, driven by 24.6% growth in the customer base to 23.1 million. The value of the transaction increased 64.4% to $ 14.7 billion ($ 59 billion annualized); and EBITDA was $ 60 million ($ 240 million annualized) with a margin of 48.8%. The company also generated $ 124 million in revenue ($ 496 million annualized), while its year-over-year pre-tax earnings for the first quarter of 2021 were $ 185 million..

Mansoor bin Ebrahim Al-Mahmoud, executive director of QIA, said the sovereign wealth fund’s investment in Airtel Africa would help promote financial inclusion in sub-Saharan Africa..

“Airtel Money plays a critical role in facilitating economic activity, even for customers who do not have access to traditional financial services.. U.S firmly We believe in their mission to expand these efforts in the coming years, “he added.

In February, Airtel Africa made it known for the first time that it wanted to sell a minority stake in AMC BV to raise cash and sell some assets. The subsequent month, it sold telecommunications towers in Madagascar and Malawi to Helios Towers for $ 119 million and raised $ 500 million from outside investors since then.


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