Sunday, 20 August 2017

Vodacom completes Safaricom deal

By Nick Wood, Total Telecom
Tuesday 08 August 17

€2.4 billion transfer leaves Vodafone with 70% stake in its South African unit.

Vodafone this week completed the transfer of a 35% indirect stake in Kenyan arm Safaricom to its Vodacom unit. The deal increases Vodafone's holding in the South African telco to 69…

Vodafone this week completed the transfer of a 35% indirect stake in Kenyan arm Safaricom to its Vodacom unit.

The deal increases Vodafone's holding in the South African telco to 69.7% from 65%. Under the transaction, Vodafone received 233.5 million new shares in Vodacom, valued at €2.36 billion when the transfer was announced in May.

Vodafone will continue to hold a 40% indirect stake in Safaricom, 35% via Vodacom, and 5% via a wholly-owned subsidiary, Vodafone Kenya. Meanwhile, Vodacom gets exposure to the Kenyan mobile market.

Vodafone said the stake transfer will streamline and simplify the management of its sub-Saharan African holdings. It is also designed to strengthen the alignment between Safaricom and Vodacom.

The deal also means Vodacom now has a free float of approximately 18%, below the 20% threshold required by the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE). Vodafone has agreed a two-year exemption from the exchange's free float requirement, and has pledged to sell down its holding in Vodacom before the exemption expires.

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