MTN plaza in Lagos

 

Rob Shooter, Chief executive Officer of MTN, says the company is looking to trim its assets, in order to focus on core telecoms services.

“What we really want to say to the investment community is that we’ve got a company with very good growth prospects and a very specific plan to simplify and modernise the group,” Shuter told Reuters.

In a conference call with reporters in South Africa Wednesday, Shooter said the firm had already raised $140 million from the sale of several assets in the first six months of 2019.

“So we’re well on track for our 15 billion rand (target) over three years,” Shuter informed reporters in a post-earnings conference Wednesday.

In a press statement, the company said it had sold its shareholder loan in ATC Ghana to American Tower Corporation for 900 million rand, its interests in investment fund Amadeus as well as associated holding in Travelstart for 1.2 billion rand between January and June 2019.

Reuters reports that although Shooter did not mention the assets it intends to sell, analysts believe his statement that the company will look to ‘refocus’ its attention on ‘high-growth markets on the continent and in the Middle East,’ suggests minor businesses in Liberia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, and worn-torn Syria, South Sudan as well as Yemen might be cut.

The company said investments in tower companies and e-commerce platforms like Jumia were valued at 40 billion rand and would be sold over time because they were not long-term strategic assets.

Shuter is also said to be driving the company into mobile financial services, music streaming, and mobile gaming, as he is hoping a growing young tech-savvy population will offset falling prices for basic telecoms services.

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