IHS Nigeria Plc (IHS) and Investec Asset Management, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, and the Netherlands Development Finance Company (FMO) have concluded an agreement worth US$79 million (N11.9 billion). This agreement forms part of efforts to improve growth in Nigeria’s telecommunications sector. The investment will be in the form of an equity investment in IHS.
Last week IHS informed Nigeria’s “The Guardian” newspaper that the investment, which is subject to regulatory approvals, would help the company build and acquire mobile phone towers in sub-Saharan Africa, thereby increasing mobile phone coverage and reducing communication costs in the region.
Executive Director, IHS, Issam Darwish, said the fund would enhance telecommunications services in the country by breaking current barriers in the sector. Investec made the money available via its African private equity funds.
Darwish, who said IHS, which is the largest telecommunications infrastructure provider in West Africa with more than 2,700 towers under its management and is still expanding its ownership and leasing operations throughout Africa, noted that the company intended to bring down costs, expand coverage, accelerate technology rollouts and improve the quality of service for subscribers in Africa.
Nigeria has an estimated 80 million active mobile telephone users and a teledensity of 53 percent.
By Angela Meadon