S. Africa group pays $335M for MTN Nigeria share

AP News
Posted: Nov 28, 2012 6:43 AM

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — A South African investment group has purchased a minority stake in MTN Group Ltd.'s operation in Nigeria for $335 million.

Shanduka Group said in a statement Wednesday that it bought the shares from three private investors it did not name. It also did not say what percentage of the MTN operation it bought.

MTN's Nigeria arm is the nation's largest mobile phone carrier, with nearly 50 percent of the market.

Nigeria has relied on mobile phones since the government granted the public access to them about a decade ago. Landlines are almost nonexistent, as the state-run telephone company has collapsed.

Nigeria, home to 160 million people, has seen explosive economic growth in recent years, making it a lucrative market for mobile phone service providers.