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News around Africa - February 3, 2021

Airtel Africa Plc Wants to Sell Part of its Mobile Money Business

Leading telecom services provider, Airtel Africa Plc, said it is working towards selling off part of its mobile money business in a bid to raise cash.

Giving update on this plan in its latest earnings report for the 9-months ended December 31st 2020, Airtel said discussions with potential buyers are still ongoing. However, the company said there is no guarantee that any transaction will be happening anytime soon. It also did not disclose how much is likely to be raised should a transaction eventually take place.

“We are actively pursuing the sale of the remaining owned tower sites that sit across several of our operating countries and the group is in discussions with various potential investors in relation to possible minority investments into Airtel Money. Discussions are ongoing between the parties and there can be no certainty that a transaction will be concluded or as to the final terms of any transaction,” the company said in its Q3 2020 financial report.

According to the Q3 financial report which was obtained by Business Elites Africa, Airtel Africa realised the sum of $291 million through its Mobile Money business in all the 14 African countries where it currently operate. This is indicative of a 34.2% increase from $228 million which was reported during the comparable period in 2019. Also, during the period under review, the total value of transactions that were processed through the Airtel Mobile Money platform increased from $23.3 billion to $33.4 billion.

“Our mobile money customer base reached 21.5 million, up 29 percent over the previous period, with Airtel Money customers now representing 18 percent of our total customers, an increase of 2.5 percentage points. Mobile money average revenue per user (ARPU) was up 5.1 percent to $1.7 (Sh187), driven by the increase in transaction values and a higher contribution from merchant payments, cash out, person-to-person transfer and recharge of mobile services through Airtel Money,” Airtel Africa disclosed.

See the attached image below for a brief overview of the company’s financial indicators during the period under review.

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