Etisalat Nigeria in possible $400mn tower deal

Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results


Mobile operator Etisalat Nigeria could sell cell-towers as part of a $400 million deal. This is according to a Reuters report that says banking and industry sources familiar with the matter have revealed the possible development.

Etisalat Nigeria, which is a unit of Abu Dhabi headquartered telecom operator Etisalat, has approached banks with a "request for proposal" (RFP) for advisory roles on the sale, two sources told Reuters on Tuesday.

Selling mobile towers helps telecom firms cut the operating expenditure (OPEX) involved in owning their own infrastructure.

Subsequently, big deals in the mobile tower segment have been inked in Africa this year.

Earlier this year, Vodacom Group sold 1,149 mobile towers in Tanzania to infrastructure firm Helios Towers Tanzania (HTT).

Also, the likes of IHS Towers has secured $522 million of debt and equity to help it build more than 1,000 build-to-site towers in Nigeria, Côte d’Ivoire and Cameroon. IHS plans to lease these towers to mobile operators in the region.

Etisalat Nigeria, though, has not commented on talk of its potential $400 million deal.

Etisalat is estimated to own about 2,500 towers in Nigeria. Towers are often valued at around $150,000 each, making 2,500 potentially worth up to about $400 million, according to Reuters