Exclusive: Airtel Uganda to be sold off to Tigo

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News reaching our desk indicates that Airtel Uganda will reportedly be sold off to Tigo, a company whose brand forms part of the Millicom Group, with presence in America , Europe , Africa and Asia with its headquarters in Luxembourg, Germany. The corridors at the Airtel Uganda headquarters are filled with these rumors buzzing all around and with tensions running high.

This comes as no surprise as Airtel Uganda’s current Managing Director, Mr Tom Gutjahr was previously CEO for three Tigo operations in Paraguay, Rwanda and Chad. The Current COO and Airtel money director of Airtel Uganda have also worked in other Tigo affiliates making it easy to broker the deal.

According to our sources, the chairman, Founder and Group CEO of Bharti Enterprises,  Mr Sunil Bharti Mittal is expected to jet into the country anytime soon to put pen to paper and close the deal. The last time he was in the country was during the Warid-Airtel merger deal.

Airtel seems to be slowly but surely closing shop in Africa, the company recently signed an MoU to sell off four to its French speaking mobile operations in Africa to Orange.  This comes at a time when Africa continues to set-back Airtel’s performance with the unit’s net loss widening to $154 million from $137 million a year earlier. This was mainly attributed to currency depreciation and changes in interconnect rates in the key Nigerian market impacted consolidated financials. In the previous financial report, total revenues from Africa grew by only 1.0%.

In Africa, Tigo Operates in Tanzania, Chad, Congo, Ghana, Rwanda, Mauritius, Senegal and if this deal is completed this month, Uganda will be added on it list of its Mobile Operators in Africa. We are yet to hear an official statement from Airtel Uganda.

Update

When contacted, Airtel CEO Africa, Christian de Faria said:

[signoff icon=”quote-circled”]The rumour on the Airtel withdrawal in Uganda is baseless and without fundament. Airtel remains committed to its African operations and sees growth opportunities for telecoms in Uganda and on the Continent. We have made significant investments and will continue to invest in our operations and deliver affordable world-class services to customers.[/signoff]

Image Credit: Airtel Uganda FB page
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