UAE-based Etisalat, which owns a 65% stake in Tanzanian mobile operator Zanzibar Telecommunication (Zantel), has started the process of divesting its mobile towers in the country, and to that end is currently accepting expressions of interest (EoI), TMT Finance reports citing unnamed sources as saying. Abu Dhabi-based Etisalat has selected Standard Chartered is its financial adviser on the deal, although Booz & Company, KPMG and Allen & Overy are also believed to be providing supplementary advice. Under the divestment plan around 600 or 700 mobile towers are to be sold, the sources said. Rumours are already linking Helios Towers as a likely buyer, given that it already owns infrastructure in Tanzania after acquiring 1,020 towers from Millicom’s Tigo Tanzania for USD80 million, in 2010. However, other suitors could emerge in the shape of ATC, Eaton Towers and IHS, all of which have all been growing their tower portfolios across Africa in recent years.
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