UAE-based telecoms operator Emirates Telecommunications Corporation (Etisalat) has revealed that its subscriber base has exceeded 100 million customers across 18 markets in the Middle East, Asia and Africa, covering two billion people. The announcement follows Etisalat’s acquisition of the remaining 18% of its West African venture Atlantique Telecom (AT) it did not already own for USD75 million earlier this month. Etisalat operates AT as part of a ten-year management contract ending in 2015; the company holds majority stakes in seven operators in Cote d’Ivoire, Benin, Burkina Faso, Gabon, Niger, Togo, and Central Africa Republic. At the same time, the UAE incumbent revealed it had filed an application with the Indian Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) in December 2009 to obtain approval to raise its 45% stake in its Indian subsidiary Etisalat DB to 50% plus one share. The company has said it is targeting majority stakes in its subsidiaries and associates for greater operational and financial synergy.