Airtel Africa has received $200 million in funding (through primary equity issuance of Airtel Africa Limited, UK) from Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), the sovereign wealth fund of the State of Qatar. Existing shares will not be sold in this transaction. Airtel Africa will use the funding to reduce its existing net debt, the company informed BSE in a filing.
The telecom also added that the current QIA investment was a part of the $1.25 billion investment in it from Warburg Pincus, Temasek, Singtel and SoftBank Group International and others. Airtel Africa operates in 14 countries across Africa and offers 2G, 3G and 4G wireless voice and data services, and Airtel Money.
Airtel’s African investments
For the quarter ended June 2018, Airtel said that it would continue to invest heavily in its African operations given the massive potential to grow.
- In its African operations, while mobile data traffic grew by 75% YoY, data customers increased by 45.2% year-on-year to 26.4 million.
- However, average revenue per user (ARPU) dropped by 3.4% on-year and 1.3% on-quarter to $2.9 in the quarter ending June.
As on June 30, 2018, the company had an aggregate customer base of 91.2 million as compared to 76.9 million in the corresponding quarter last year, an increase of 18.6%. 9 of Airtel’s 14 African countries have Airtel’s 4G network, and Airtel Money is available in all of them.
- Airtel Money’s customer base in the continent increased to 11.8 million, and the total transaction value on the platform rose by 43% on year.
- Airtel Money contributed to 5% of all revenues from Africa
In 2017 and 2016, Bharti Airtel has appointed Rajeev Sethi as the Chief Commercial Officer for Africa and promoted Raghunath Mandava, the then Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Airtel Africa to Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), respectively.