Connecting Africa is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 3099067.

Business of Tech

MTN selling BICS stake for $121 million

Article Image
Pan-African mobile operator MTN has agreed to sell its 20% stake in carrier business Belgacom International Carrier Services SA (BICS), for R1.8 billion (US$121 million).

MTN had already alerted the market to the possibility of a sale during its interim financial results in 2020. MTN even classified the BICS investment as a non-current asset held for sale in August last year.

Now it says it has concluded an agreement to sell the 20% shareholding in the communications enabler to Belgian operator Proximus and fully exit the business.

The sale is part of MTN's ongoing asset realization program (ARP), which it says "aims to reduce debt, simplify its portfolio, reduce risk, improve returns and unlock value."

Light Reading reported that Swisscom is also selling its 22.4% stake in BICS to Proximus which will now own 100% of BICS. The combined stake sales total about €217 million ($262.6 million).

BICS has had a tough time of late with its business hurt by falling roaming revenue during the COVID-19 pandemic and a continued decline in international voice revenue in general.

MTN said the timing of the closing of the deal is still dependent on customary regulatory approvals.

"Once all the conditions precedent have been fulfilled, MTN will receive proceeds of approximately €100 million (R1.8 billion) in cash, which the Group intends to use to pay down US dollar debt and for general corporate purposes," it said in a statement on Tuesday.

Related posts:

— Paula Gilbert, Editor, Connecting Africa

Innovation hub

Story

SA startup launches Life.file, the 'Dropbox for death'

A female-founded South African startup and legal technology company has launched a service called Life.file which helps people create, store and share the legal information loved ones will need when they die.

Story

Hot startup of the month: Nigeria's Gradely

Nigerian AI-based ed-tech solution Gradely is an adaptive learning app that recommends video lessons, practice questions and on-demand tutors to help students master challenging subject areas.

More Innovation hub

Latest video

More videos

Guest Perspectives

Story

Research Bites: The impact of robotics on SA's automobile industry

By Bianca Ifeoma Chigbu and Fhulu Hastings Nekhwevha

This article, in collaboration with the African Journal of Science, Technology, Innovation and Development, explores the collaborative work experience of robotics and human workers in the automobile industry in South Africa.

Story

Omdia View: June 2021

By Omdia Analysts

This month, Omdia's analysts provide context and analysis about Nigeria's Twitter ban, the privatization of Ethio Telecom and Vivendi's fiber plans in Burkina Faso.

More Guest Perspectives

Partner perspectives

All Partner Perspectives

AfricaCom perspectives

Story

Digital inclusion as a catalyst for economic empowerment: Mastercard's Imelda Ngunzu

Mastercard's Imelda Ngunzu talks to Connecting Africa about how digital payment solutions and mobile money are transforming the lives of small business owners, women and marginalized groups in East Africa.

Story

Accelerating women in STEM: In conversation with GirlCode's Tinyiko Simbine

GirlCode co-founder and CFO Tinyiko Simbine talks about why it's important to help girls and young women excel in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields.

Story

How Poa Internet is unlocking meaningful connectivity in East Africa

Poa Internet's CEO Andy Halsall shares his views on what it takes to develop last-mile connectivity and get Africans online in a meaningful way.

More AfricaCom perspectives

Upcoming events

Africa Tech Festival
November 8-12, 2021
Cape Town, South Africa
More Upcoming events

Flash poll

All polls

Upcoming webinars

Digital Skills Enhancing Human Capital

As nations begin to look beyond the crisis of COVID-19 to the new future of work, an opportunity to leverage this disruption as a powerful catalyst for positive change exists – one that could reshape the future and provide more accessible, fair, and impactful digital education and training.

In this webinar, we focus on how digital skills can enhance human capital and help realise the extraordinary potential of intelligent, 4IR-ready African workforces.

Key topics include:

  • Importance of having more than basic digital skills – upskilling & reskilling
  • Championing access to online educational resources – affordable and reliable internet, electricity and hardware
  • Future career options for industry specific roles: Cloud, AI, industrial IoT, big data analytics
  • Education 4.0: How updating educational curricula is key for growth
  • The importance of progressive, industry-driven educational policy frameworks

More Webinars

Sponsored video

More videos

Like us on Facebook

Newsletter Sign Up


Sign Up