Airtel Africa gets an extra $200M for its mobile money business from QIA – TechCrunch


Three months in the past, Mastercard invested $100 million in Airtel Cell Commerce BV (AMC BV) — the cellular cash enterprise of telecom Airtel Africa. This was two weeks after it additionally obtained $200 million from TPG’s Rise Fund.

Right now, the African telecoms operator has introduced that it has secured one other funding for its cellular cash arm. The investor? Qatar Holding LLC, an affiliate of the Qatar Funding Authority (QIA), the sovereign wealth fund of the State of Qatar with over $300 billion in belongings. The Center Jap company is ready to take a position $200 million into AMC BV by a secondary buy of shares from Airtel Africa.

AMC BV is an Airtel Africa subsidiary and the holding firm for a number of of Airtel Africa’s cellular cash operations throughout 14 African nations, together with Kenya, Uganda and Nigeria. The cellular cash arm operates one of many largest monetary providers on the continent. It offers customers entry to cellular wallets, help for worldwide cash transfers, loans and digital bank cards.

In accordance with an announcement launched by the telecoms operator, the proceeds of the funding will be used to cut back debt and spend money on community and gross sales infrastructure within the respective working nations. The deal will shut in two tranches — $150 million invested on the first shut, more than likely in August. The remaining $50 million will be invested at second shut.

Airtel Africa claims QIA will maintain a minority stake whereas it continues to carry the bulk stake. This transaction nonetheless values Airtel Africa at $2.65 billion on a money and debt-free foundation like different offers. Nevertheless, what’s completely different this time is that QIA is entitled to nominate a director to AMC BV’s board and “to sure customary info and minority safety rights.”

Airtel Africa’s most up-to-date report for Q1 2021 exhibits indicators of development. The telecoms operator noticed a 12 months on 12 months income development of 53.7%, pushed by a 24.6% development in buyer base to 23.1 million. Transaction worth went up 64.4% to $14.7 billion ($59 billion annualised); and EBITDA stood at $60 million ($240 million annualised) at a margin of 48.8%. The corporate additionally generated $124 million in income ($496 million annualised), whereas its earnings earlier than tax year-on-year for Q1 2021 stood at $185 million.

Mansoor bin Ebrahim Al-Mahmoud, CEO of QIA, stated the sovereign’s wealth fund funding in Airtel Africa would assist promote monetary inclusion in Sub-Saharan Africa. “Airtel Cash performs a essential function in facilitating financial exercise, together with for purchasers with out entry to conventional monetary providers. We firmly imagine in its mission to increase these efforts over the approaching years,” he added.

In February, Airtel Africa first made it identified that it wished to promote a minority stake in AMC BV to boost money and unload some belongings. The subsequent month, it bought off telecommunication towers in Madagascar and Malawi to Helios Towers for $119 million and raised $500 million from exterior buyers.



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