MTN weighing R6,8bn Ghana share sale - TechCentral

MTN weighing R6,8bn Ghana share sale

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MTN Group is considering selling about US$500m (R6,8bn) in shares of its Ghana business, according to people familiar with the matter.

The company is approaching high-net-worth individuals in the country about a private placement of a 35% stake in the Ghana unit, valuing it at about $1,5bn, the people said, asking not to be identified because the deliberations are private.

No final decisions have been made, they said.

The sale would help MTN meet conditions it agreed to last year when it spent $67,5m for the right to use spectrum that can carry high-speed mobile data for customers in Ghana.

The company was granted a 15-year licence for fourth-generation spectrum on the condition that 35% of the business would be owned by Ghanaian investors.

A representative for Johannesburg-based MTN declined to comment.

MTN said earlier this month it raised more than $1,3bn from loan agreements as it works to improve its debt structure and support its credit rating.

MTN’s move to attract funding comes after the company reported its first-ever half-year loss in August, partly caused by an agreement to settle a record 330bn naira ($1,1bn; R13,6bn) fine in Nigeria for missing a deadline to disconnect customers.

It said on Wednesday that it “strongly refutes” an accusation by Nigerian lawmakers that the wireless carrier illegally moved almost $14bn (R190bn) out of the country over 10 years as the company tries to quell the latest controversy in its largest market.  — (c) 2016 Bloomberg LP

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