Airtel Africa has named an eight-member board ahead of its planned Listing in London next year June. The member includes Sunil Bharti Mittal, Raghunath Mandava, Akhil Gupta, Vishal Mahadevia, Alok Sama, Arthur Lang, Shravin Bharti Mittal, and Richard Gubbins all representatives from parent and global investors.
According to the company, the formation of the company board follows the successful primary equity issuance of $1.25 billion to six leading global investors comprising Warburg Pincus, Temasek, Singtel, SoftBank Group International, and others ahead of an intended IPO.
Recall that we had earlier reported plans by Airtel to expand its operations in Nigeria and other African markets. The two-stage fund-raising exercise is aimed at reducing the telco’s consolidated debt of $15 billion. In a Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) filing, Bharti Airtel confirmed the “receipt of full issue proceeds and completion of the said primary equity issuance to leading global investors by Airtel Africa.”
After the pre-IPO issue, Bharti Airtel’s stake in its Africa unit will dip to around 72 per cent. According to Nitin Soni, Fitch Director of Corporates, Airtel Africa is likely to take a call on the IPO timing once markets are more stable.
Airtel Nigeria is the second largest telco with a market share of 26 per cent, according to the September monthly subscribers report by the Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC), while MTN maintains the lead in Nigeria with 39.68 per cent market share. The telco-giant, this year started the upgrade of its network to 4G and it is currently in 60 major cities and towns in Nigeria across different states.