MTN Group: Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati's Stake Soars with $900 Million
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Billionaires - July 14, 2023

MTN Group: Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati’s Stake Soars with $900 Million

Reports have revealed the remarkable financial value of the shares held by Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati in MTN Group, the largest telecommunications company in Africa.

Mikati’s ownership in MTN Group, estimated to be worth over $900 million, establishes him as a noteworthy figure in the African telecom sector. With a substantial 6.72-percent stake, he holds a prominent position within the industry.

With a presence in 19 markets, MTN Group is widely recognized for its remarkable progress and expansion. The telecom powerhouse serves an astounding customer base of 289 million, offering an extensive array of services encompassing voice, data, fintech, and digital solutions.

MTN Group’s financial success

In 2022, MTN Group achieved remarkable financial success, reporting impressive profits of R24.26 billion ($1.29 billion) and generating revenues of R207 billion ($11 billion). These figures represent a significant increase from their 2020 numbers of R19.65 billion ($1.04 billion) in profits and R179.36 billion ($9.5 billion) in revenues, showcasing the company’s strong growth and financial performance.

At present, MTN shares are being traded at R134.92 ($7.5) per share on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, experiencing a slight decrease of 94 basis points compared to the morning opening price. This positions the company’s market capitalization at R257 billion ($14.27 billion), ranking it as the eleventh most valuable company listed on the exchange.

Considering the current market price, Prime Minister Najib Mikati’s 6.72-percent ownership in MTN Group holds a market value of R16.37 billion ($909.07 million). This substantial figure solidifies his status as one of the wealthiest investors participating in the Johannesburg Stock Exchange.

Mikati’s entrepreneurial journey

Having served as Lebanon’s prime minister three times, Najib Mikati embarked on his entrepreneurial path by co-founding M1 Group, a Beirut-based investment firm, in 2007. His journey began back in 1982 when he and his brother Taha Mikati established Investcom, a mobile telecommunications service provider, amidst the backdrop of Lebanon’s civil war.

Venturing into the African market, the Mikati brothers spearheaded the construction of cellphone towers in countries like Ghana, Liberia, and Benin. Their remarkable achievements culminated in the successful initial public offering (IPO) of Investcom on the London Stock Exchange in 2005. In a stunning turn of events, South Africa’s MTN acquired the Mikatis’ stake in 2009 for an astonishing $3.6 billion, solidifying their entrepreneurial triumph.

Forbes reports that Najib Mikati holds a notable net worth of $2.7 billion, placing him at the 1,152nd position among the wealthiest individuals worldwide. A substantial portion of his wealth is derived from his stake in MTN Group, highlighting his exceptional business acumen and ability to identify lucrative investment prospects.

Mikati’s strategic involvement in MTN Group further strengthens his financial stature and reinforces his influence within the African telecommunications industry. As both the Prime Minister of Lebanon and a highly accomplished entrepreneur, his investments carry significant weight and have a notable impact on the economic landscape of the region.

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