MTN Group board will back the move by the government of Rwanda to pursue an Initial Public Offering (IPO) that would result into the sale of the latter’s stake in MTN Rwanda, the country’s largest mobile operator.
MTN Rwanda is a subsidiary of South Africa’s MTN Group.
Government plans to sell its 10 per cent stake in the telecom operator by the end of the financial year 2011/12 as part of its wider plan to boost the growth of the nascent stock exchange and also raise domestic revenues to sustain the country’s robust economic growth.
The Minister of Finance, John Rwangombwa, recently noted that if MTN Group, the majority shareholder in MTN Rwanda offers the right price, they (government) would sell the shares directly to them.
Government also has an option to divest from the country’s largest mobile operator through an IPO but the move is subject to approval from other shareholders.
MTN Group board is, however, backing the option to pursue the IPO.
“We have not made a final decision on how to structure our shares. But we would wish the public to own what they have done in Rwanda,” Shauket Fakie, MTN Group Executive in charge of business risk management told Business Times last week.
He noted that MTN Rwanda has made tremendous achievement, both in terms of investment and profit, which projects a good future for the company in the local market.
“We are very proud of what we have achieved,” he said, adding that recent successes in mobile banking will help the unbanked rural in Rwanda to access financial services.