India’s largest mobile phone company, Bharti Airtel, has extended merger talks with the MTN Group in South Africa.
The two firms are in talks for Bharti to acquire a 49 percent stake in MTN Group which has a unit in Rwanda.
The South African telecommunication company would get a 36 percent stake in the Indian business.
According to the officials from the Brunswick Group, a communication company that talked to Business Times on behalf of MTN, the discussions that were supposed to end August 31, 2009 have been extended for another one month.
“MTN and Bharti had entered into an exclusivity agreement regarding the potential transaction until end September 2009,” a statement sent to Business Times by Brunswick Group said.
MTN Group, which was launched in 1994, operates in 21 Africa and the Middle East countries. The mobile operator recorded 98,203,000 subscribers on March 31, 2009 and touched the 100 million subscriber mark in April this year.