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Bharti Airtel mulling Bangladesh tower sale

Bharti Airtel is reportedly looking to sell off its tower assets in Bangladesh. The operator believes Airtel Bangladesh’s assets, which include 4000 towers, to be worth at least $200 million.

The sale could be part of a drive to increase cash reserves, as Bharti Airtel may be aiming to increase its spending power in the upcoming 900MHz spectrum auctions. Alternatively, the operator may be considering an acquisition following the publication of India’s revised M&A laws.

That said, Bharti’s debts total $9.3 billion – mainly as a result of it acquiring Zain’s African operations four years ago. Selling of tower assets could therefore simply be a way of reducing this. The operator is reportedly aiming to sell its 15,000-strong African tower network for between $1.5 billion and $1.8 billion, and has received offers for the Bangladeshi infrastructure.

Bharti acquired full control of its Bangladeshi unit last year when it bought out Warid Telecom’s 30% stake. The operator has around 8.3 million connections.


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