Airtel Africa gets $200 mln investment from Qatar Investment Authority

Airtel Africa Ltd, the holding company of Bharti Airtel’s Africa operations, said Qatar Investment Authority, the sovereign wealth fund of Qatar, has agreed to invest USD 200 million through a primary equity issuance in the company.

The proceeds will be used to further reduce Airtel Africa’s existing net debt, it said.

The investment from QIA is in continuation of the recent USD 1.25 billion investment by six leading global investors including Warburg Pincus, Temasek, Singtel and SoftBank Group International and others.

Airtel Africa recently announced a newly constituted Board of Directors that included representatives from Bharti Airtel and other investors.

Airtel Africa said, “We are excited to welcome Qatar Investment Authority as a long term strategic equity partner. QIA is a respected global institution with a distinctive lineage and a robust global portfolio. We look forward to a long and fruitful partnership with QIA.”

This transaction will not involve any sale of shares by existing shareholders, the Indian company said.

Airtel is also busy preparing an IPO for its Africa unit. Three months ago, it denied reports that there was a delay in the planned IPO due to market conditions.

Qatar Investment Authority said, “As a long-term global investor, we are delighted to invest in one of the leading telecommunication companies in Africa. QIA will look forward to supporting Airtel’s vision in building a world class business in the African continent.”

Airtel Africa Limited is a pan-African telecommunications company with operations in 14 countries across Africa. Its product offerings include 2G, 3G and 4G wireless voice and data services and mobile commerce through Airtel Money.