TMTFinance reports that BNP Paribas is forging ahead with the hunt for a buyer for Mauritanian telco Mattel, working on behalf of its client Tunisie Telecom (TT), which is looking to sell its 51% stake in the company. Unnamed sources suggest that the Mattel sale process is very much alive, although it is claimed that Emirates International Telecommunications’ (EIT’s) decision to offload its 35% stake in TT – a transaction that is proving anything but smooth – is hampering efforts to find a buyer for Mattel. It is understood that BNP Paribas has been pitching Mattel to a number of regional giants such as Bharti Airtel, MTN Group and Orange, while Morocco’s Inwi (a Zain affiliate) has also been linked with a bid. The financial firm could be looking to help facilitate the sale of 100% of Mattel, as local minority shareholders own 49% of the telco and have hired Goldstone Capital to advise them on a prospective deal. However, while both TT and the minority shareholders are keen to secure a deal, they stress it must be at the right price. The valuation of Mattel is something of a grey area, although one source says it is likely to be in the region of USD200 million.