Post Views: 143 MTN Group Limited may put off plans to list its Nigerian operation as part of the settlement of a N330 billion ($1 billion) fine impos...
MTN Group Limited may put off plans to list its Nigerian operation as part of the settlement of a N330 billion ($1 billion) fine imposed by the National Communications Commission (NCC) for missing a deadline to disconnect unregistered subscribers, until 2018 as it seeks to resolve a regulatory dispute and awaits an economic recovery in Nigeria, its biggest market.
Although MTN agreed to list its Nigerian arm on the Stock Exchange, it said last July that the listing would take place this year, subject to market conditions and even went ahead in July to appoint Citigroup and Standard Bank as advisers on the Nigeria listing.
Since then, allegations by Senator Dino Melaye that MTN illegally moved $14 billion out of the country has threatened to delay the process.
Speaking during the ongoing annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland, according to Bloomberg, MTN Chairman and Acting Chief Executive Officer Phuthuma said the situation is “a work in progress and hopefully within the 12 to 18 month period we will be able to do it.”
The wireless operator had about 235 million customers across 22 countries in Africa and the Middle East as of end September.
According to him, “regulatory issues need to be resolved, and the macro conditions need to have improved.
“We’ve always intended to list – we have reaffirmed that with the government. Clearly, we can only list when the conditions are conducive,” said Nhleko, who will revert to his previous role as non-executive chairman when Rob Shuter, the new chief executive arrives in March.
MTN shares have lost more than a third of their value since the fine was handed down in October 2015, and the company has overhauled management and toughened its approach to regulators as a result.
MTN share price was little changed at 125.02 rand as of 10:02 a.m. in Johannesburg on Friday, valuing the company at 236 billion rand ($17 billion).