Mubadala Development Company might have decided to exit the ownership of Etisalat Nigeria, according to a report in TeleGeography. The website quotes an unconfirmed report in Nigerian newspaper Premium Times.
Etisalat group increased its stake in the Nigerian cellco from 40% to 45% in February 2017 when a loan was converted to equity; up to that date Mubadala Development Company owned 30% of Etisalat Nigeria’s shares.
In March 2017 the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) agreed with local banks to pursue a default deal to avoid deterring investors.
One of Premium Times’ sources said: ‘I can tell you that Mubadala’s withdrawal takes effect from today [Thursday 15 June]’, whilst the article speculated that this event might lead to the creditor banks taking places on Etisalat’s board. Another anonymous source claimed that the banks will seek to set up a new holding vehicle to continue running the cellco, and will approach the NCC with such a plan by next week at the latest.
Mubadala spokesman Brian Lott told Reuters on Friday that a local media report saying that the fund has pulled out of Etisalat Nigeria was wrong and that several proposals are under discussion. He declined to elaborate on the options being considered but said he will know more next week.