TPG's Rise Fund to acquire 7.5% stake in Airtel Mobile Commerce BV

TPG's Rise Fund to acquire 7.5% stake in Airtel Mobile Commerce BV

U.S. based investment firm, TPG's Rise Fund is nearing plans to pump $200 million in Airtel Africa's mobile money biz., Airtel Mobile Commerce (AMC) BV. Following successful execution of this transaction, Rise Fund would attain a 7.5% in AMC.

As per an official statement, the transaction will close in two stages, with $150 million to be invested in the first stage. While the outstanding $50 million will be infused upon transfer of mobile money operations & contracts into AMC BV.

The statement added that the funds from this transaction will be used to lower Group debt and invest in sales and network infrastructure in the respective operating countries. Airtel Africa Group is also in talks with other investors for possible minority investments into Airtel Money for a total of 25% of the decided share capital of AMC BV.

Currently, AMC BV is the holding company for Airtel Africa's diverse mobile money operations. The firm seeks to own and operate mobile money unit across all of Airtel Africa's 14 operating regions.

The operator’s mobile money services offers financial services such as merchant and commercial payments, mobile wallet deposit and withdrawals, loans and savings, benefits transfers, virtual credit card & international money transfers.

Reports state that Airtel Africa’s mobile money services have registered 41% year-on-year growth in constant currency, majorly headed by 29% growth in customer base.

Raghunath Mandava, Airtel Africa CEO, mentioned that their firm is pleased to welcome The Rise Fund as an investor in its mobile money business and a partner to help their firm identify the overall potential to bank the unbanked across Africa.

As per Yemi Lalude, Partner at TPG heading Africa investing for The Rise Fund, stated that financial inclusion is a global issue and is more acute in Africa. Lalude added that with this investment, TPG is looking forward to expanding The Rise Fund's global fintech portfolio and deepen its focus on ameliorating financial inclusion in Africa and worldwide.

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