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Zain Nigeria not for sale to Bharti

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Mobile provider ECONET is making attempts to block any possible sale of Zain Nigeria to Bharti Airtel of India. According to Bloomberg, CEO of Econet, Strive Masiyiwa says his company has the first option to buy the stake acquired by Zain.

Econet owns 5 percent of Zain Nigeria, which is 65 percent held by Bahrain-based Zain. Zain is in talks to sell its African operations to Bharti for $10.7 billion.

The matter of the stalled sale of Zain Nigeria as a result of Econet’s position is before an international arbitration tribunal.

Nigeria is the largest market in the 15 African countries in which Zain operates, with more than 14 million subscribers. Zain started operations in Ghana in December 2008 and currently has about 1.2 million subscribers.

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