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Millicom exits the African market

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Millicom, a Luxembourg-based international telecommunications and media company, has announced it has signed agreements to sell its operations in Tanzania and its stake in the AirtelTigo joint venture in Ghana. The concluding deals will complete Millicom’s prolonged plan to leave the African market and focus on its operations in Latin America.

 

Millicom has been operating in the Tanzanian market since 1994 and took ownership of the local operations in 2006. For a while, the company tried to make their shares public, but in the end decided to sell the business in its entirety. The company agreed to sell its Tanzanian business for an undisclosed amount to a consortium led by Axian.

 

In the meantime, the company signed an agreement with its joint venture partner Bharti Airtel on Friday to pass on its AirtelTigo shares to the Ghanaian government for $25 million.

 

Looking at Millicom’s operations in Africa over the past couple of years, the decision to exit the market should not be unexpected. The company reported that during the last quarter of 2020, their revenue fell 5.3% to $1.03 billion in the quarter, because of the coronavirus pandemic brutally hitting the company during that year.

 

Millicom CEO, Mauricio Ramos, commented: “Today Tigo is a leading provider of broadband services to consumers, businesses and governments in Latin America, where penetration and data speeds remain low by the standards of more mature markets. Through our investment-led strategy, we are bringing reliable high-speed mobile and fixed broadband to the communities we serve in the region. With today’s announcement that we are divesting our remaining African businesses, we close a chapter in our history and open another solely focused on the Latin American region.”

 

No further information on these transactions has been published, but both deals will be required to obtain the typical regulatory approvals.