African telecommunications firm 'in talks'
16 February 2010
Telecommunications in Africa could be affected by an announcement that Kuwait company Zain is in talks about selling its African unit to Bharti Airtel.
With an enterprise value of $10.7 billion (£6.8 million), Zain Africa BV is expected to see a high-value payout.
A statement has revealed that any loans payable to the company are included in the valuations and that both parties are agreeing on the deal.
Some 15 countries including Nigeria and Uganda are included in Zain's African group.
It is thought that the takeover, if it is finalised, will make Bharti Airtel one of the world's largest mobile firms.
According to Business Daily, the move would "underscore Africa's continued attractiveness to global operators looking for a presence in one of the remaining growth markets".
The publication adds that the African arm of the company has previously struggled with profit percentages, despite accounting for 62 per cent of Zain's subscriber base.
As stated by the firm's chief executive officer, Zain wishes to be a "top-ten global mobile operator by 2011".