Agence Ecofin writes that South Africa-based regional carrier MTN Group has revealed plans to issue bonds worth NGN50 billion (USD129 million) in Nigeria to raise funds for its day to day requirements and working capital needs. It is understood that the move comes as the parent group seeks to diversify its funding streams and to support MTN Nigeria’s 4G network rollout in the West African nation where coverage increased to 48% by late March 2020, up from 44% in late 2019. Nigeria is rated MTN Group’s ‘largest and most profitable’ market and in the January-March 2020 quarter it added a net 4.18 million new subscribers for a total of 68.49 million.
MTN Nigeria is 78.83%-owned by MTN Group, with the remainder held by private (local) shareholders. In January 2020 President and CEO of MTN Group, Rob Shuter, confirmed plans to invest around USD1.6 billion in its Nigerian operations over the next three years.