Airtel Africa, a leading provider of telecommunications and mobile money services, with a presence in 14 countries across Africa, has announced the signing of an agreement under which Mastercard will invest $100 million in Airtel Mobile Commerce BV (AMC BV), a wholly owned subsidiary of Airtel Africa.
AMC BV is currently the holding company for several of Airtel Africa’s mobile money operations and is intended to own and operate the mobile money businesses across all of Airtel Africa’s operating countries. The transaction values Airtel Africa’s mobile money business at $2.65 billion on a cash and debt free basis.
Mastercard will hold a minority stake in AMC BV upon completion of the transaction, while Airtel Africa will continue to hold the majority stake. The Transaction is subject to customary closing conditions including necessary regulatory filings and approvals, and the transfer of specified mobile money business assets and contracts into AMC BV.
Alongside the investment, the Group and Mastercard have extended commercial agreements and signed a new commercial framework which will deepen their partnerships across numerous geographies and areas including card issuance, payment gateway, payment processing, merchant acceptance and remittance solutions, amongst others.
The proceeds from the Transaction will be used to reduce Group debt and invest in network and sales infrastructure in the respective operating countries.
Mobile money services are available across the Group’s 14 countries of operation, however in Nigeria the Group offers Airtel Money services through a partnership with a local bank and has applied for its own mobile banking licence. It is the intention that all mobile money operations will be owned and operated by AMC BV.