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American Tower Corp buys Airtel’s Nigeria towers

American Tower Corp. is entering the Nigerian market

American Tower Corp has announced it is toacquire Bharti Airtel’s Nigerian towers, marking the firm’s first entrance to the country’s market. Under the deal Airtel will however have a tenancy of the 4,800 towers for at least 10 years.

“We are pleased to announce the launch of our operations in Nigeria while expanding our relationship with Airtel, one of the leading multinational operators in the world,” Jim Taiclet, Chairman, President and CEO of American Tower Corp said. “

“With the largest population and economy in Africa and relatively underdeveloped wireless infrastructure, we view Nigeria as a tremendous growth opportunity. Further, we expect this investment to support our long-term objective of generating double-digit AFFO per share growth for our stockholders.”

Airtel claimed the sale will allow it to better focus on its core business and customers, as well as to reduce its Capex on passive infrastructure in Nigeia.

“Nigeria is the largest mobile market in Africa and a key one for Airtel,” CEO Christian de Faria said. “This agreement, which is part of our stated philosophy of promoting infrastructure sharing, will provide us with considerable cost efficiencies and at the same time allows us to sharpen our focus on the customer. American Tower has a proven track record in passive infrastructure management and we look forward to benefitting from the best practices from all other countries it operates in.”

The deal is expected to close during the first half of 2015, depending on regulatory approvals.


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