Two weeks ago, Airtel Africa Plc informed stakeholders that TPG Capital’s impact investment platform, The Rise Fund, will invest the sum of $200 million in its mobile money business. And then earlier today, the telco once again announced that yet another major investor, Mastercard, is set to invest $100 million in Airtel Mobile Commerce BV, the holding company that oversees Airtel Africa’s mobile money operations across Africa.
Note that Airtel Africa Plc plans to put these funds to good use towards scaling the company’s operations. In specific terms, proceeds from the latest and previous transactions will go towards reducing Group debt as well as investing in network infrastructure.
“With today’s announcement we are pleased to welcome Mastercard as an investor in our mobile money business, joining The Rise Fund which we announced two weeks ago. This is a continuation of our strategy to increase the minority shareholding in our mobile money business with the further intention to list this business within four years. We are significantly strengthening our existing strategic relationship with Mastercard to help us both realise the full potential from the substantial opportunity to improve financial inclusion across our countries of operation. The combination of our extensive customer base and distribution platforms and Mastercard’s products and services, innovation and know how, mean we can together accelerate demand and drive growth in financial services for the benefit of all our customers and markets,” Airtel Africa Plc said regarding the deal with Mastercard, according to a press statement seen by Business Elites Africa.
What is it about Airtel Mobile Money that is attracting all these investors?
- Airtel Africa’s mobile money business is currently available in 14 countries across Africa, thereby offering more Africans financial inclusion opportunities while presenting greater opportunities for the company to make more money.
- The telco’s mobile money business has been generating impressive income in recent years. According to Airtel, its mobile money business generated of $110 million in Q3 2020. Underlying EBITDA for the period stood at $54 million.
- As many as 21.5 million people are using Airtel Africa’s mobile money services.
- Transaction value grew by 53.0% to $12.8 billion as at Q3 2020.
- Airtel Africa’s mobile money business is valued at $2.65 billion on a cash and debt free basis.