Airtel to buy Tigo Rwanda from Millicom International

Airtel GhanaBharti Airtel is set to acquire Tigo Rwanda from Millicom International Cellular. The company did not disclose financial details of the deal that is aimed at expanding its presence in Africa.

Mauricio Ramos, CEO of Millicom, said the sale of its business in Rwanda is in line with its strategy to focus on providing advanced fixed and mobile data services in Latin America.

Earlier, Airtel and Tigo have merged their telecom operations to create a strong business entity in Ghana.

The acquisition will consolidate the Rwandan telecom market and position Airtel as a strong number two telecom operator in Rwanda. The consideration for the transaction is based on approximately 6x EBITDA multiple, payable over two years.

Airtel, India’s #1 telecom operator based on revenue and subscriber base, earlier acquired assets in Uganda (Warid) and Congo B (Warid), Kenya (yu Mobile) and consolidated operations in Ghana (Millicom).

Airtel has presence across 15 African countries with close to 83 million customers in September quarter of 2017. Airtel earlier sold some business to Orange.

Globally, Airtel is ranked as the third largest mobile services provider in terms of customer base. Airtel’s global network serves over 370 million customers across 17 countries.

Sunil Mittal, chairman of Bharti Airtel, said: “Airtel has taken proactive steps in Africa to consolidate and realign the market structure in the last few remaining countries where its operations are lagging on account of lower market share and presence of too many operators.”

“We are committed to the long term viability of our operations in two other countries — Kenya and Tanzania — to ensure that in 2018 all our 15 operations in Africa start contributing positive margins and cash flows towards a healthy and profitable Airtel Africa,” Sunil Mittal said.

Raghunath Mandava, MD and CEO of Airtel Africa, said: “The acquisition will create synergies with our existing business and help boost operational efficiencies in the market.”