Bharti Airtel International (Netherlands), a wholly owned subsidiary of Bharti Airtel, has completed the acquisition of Econet Wireless Limited’s entire 4.2% shareholding in Airtel Nigeria. As a result of the transaction, which was carried out through a wholly owned subsidiary of Bharti Airtel International (Netherlands), the firm’s overall holding in Airtel Nigeria has increased to 83.25%.
The minority stake held by Econet Wireless had been in dispute since Bharti Airtel acquired Zain Group’s African business in a USD10.7 billion transaction in 2010. At the start of this month, Airtel reached an agreement with Zain Group, under which the Kuwaiti firm agreed to pay around USD129 million ‘for the settlement of all of Airtel’s claims on account of the Nigeria litigation, certain tax matters and associated legal costs’. At the same time, Bharti Airtel announced that a separate settlement had been reached with Econet, which resolved all claims and disputes between the pair, including in Nigeria and the Netherlands. ‘With these settlements, Airtel has closed several ongoing major litigations in Nigeria, the UK and the Netherlands,’ the firm concluded.