India’s largest mobile-phone operator and telecom giant in Nigeria, Airtel has been reported to be considering quieting its operations in about 15 African countries in a bid to further straighten the company purse, cut debt and make its biggest overseas acquisition profitable.
According to reports, In Kenya alone, the company was said to have fired about half of its staff as it struggles with competition. In 5 yrs, Airtel lost N146,645,880,750 (Sh50 billion) in the Kenyan’ market, while it sold its Sierra Leone and Burkina Faso unit, alongside some of its tower businesses across the Africa continent, as it struggles to reorganizes assets it bought in 2010 in a $9 billion deal with Kuwait’s largest mobile-phone operator.
Reports from Bloomberg reveals Airtel “is considering mergers or stake sales at some of its Africa operations as it looks to cut debt and make its biggest overseas acquisition profitable.”
The chairman of Bharti Airtel, Mr. Mittal, while speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, said the process is expected to be completed within a year and would most likely affect some of Bharti’s businesses in 15 African nations in which Nigeria is not an exception.
Obviously, business seems not to have been running smooth for the India’s largest mobile-phone operator in these 15 African nations as they lost about $91 million just at the quarter ended in September last year, as against $170 million loss in previous year.