Telecom firm Bharti Airtel has sought to allay concerns of the Tanzanian government about the proposed listing of Airtel Africa Ltd, saying the planned IPO will not change the shareholding pattern of its unit in the African nation. Amid reports that the Tanzanian government had raised objections to the ensuing initial public offering of Airtel Africa Ltd, Bharti Airtel issued a clarification asserting that the planned listing was, in no way, diluting the control of Airtel Tanzania.
“We have vide our separate communications to the Tanzanian Government clarified that the listing of shares of Airtel Africa limited will not change the shareholding or control of Airtel Tanzania or its parent company which holds shares in Airtel Tanzania i e Bharti Airtel Tanzania BV,” the company said in a regulatory filing.
Airtel would, even post IPO, continue to majority own Airtel Africa limited, UK and in turn the African operations, it added. Airtel Africa limited, a UK incorporated subsidiary of Bharti Airtel Ltd, is intending to list its shares on an international stock exchange for funding the growth of its Africa businesses in 14 countries, including Tanzania, it said.
Airtel Africa’s operations span Nigeria, Chad, Congo B, Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, Madagascar, Niger, Kenya, Malawi, Seychelles, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Rwanda. Last week, Airtel Africa, a subsidiary of telecom major Bharti Airtel, had announced the appointment of its new board of directors, close on the heels of the USD 1.25 billion primary equity issuance to prominent global investors and ahead of the intended public offering.