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MTN Nigeria climbs 10% as wireless carrier starts Lagos trading

MTN shares jump, making it the second-biggest listed firm in Nigeria, after Dangote Cement.

MTN Group’s Nigerian unit shares jumped as they began trading in Lagos, a step toward a partial sale of a majority 79% stake owned by Africa’s largest wireless carrier.

MTN Nigeria Communications rose 10% to 99 naira as of 2:19 pm, giving it a market value of 2.01 trillion naira ($5.6 billion). That makes the mobile-phone company the second-biggest listed firm in Africa’s most populous country, behind only Dangote Cement, the main asset of billionaire Aliko Dangote.

Key Insights:

MTN agreed to an IPO of its Nigeria business as part of the settlement of a reduced $1 billion fine in the country in 2016. In a first step, Nigerian investors who previously bought and sold their shares occasionally over the counter can now trade over the Nigerian Stock Exchange.

 
Later, MTN will add to the free float by selling down its majority stake. Assigning a valuation to MTN Nigeria has been complex as the parent company is locked in a legal battle with Nigeria’s Attorney General over a $2 billion tax claim, the latest in a series of disputes in its biggest market.
 
The carrier appointed former Nigerian central bank Governor Lamido Sanusi, who’s now the Emir of Kano, as a non-executive director to help ease relations. The shares started trading at 2:14 pm, meaning the NSE’s newest member only had 16 minutes to trade before the market closed on Thursday.
 
© 2019 Bloomberg L.P
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The Nigerians( 200 m people) should thank MTN SA for listing the 2nd biggest company in their useless country. SA not even 1/3 of the population and yet it takes us to create their 2nd largest entity. But the Nigerians want to rob MTN of taxes. What a shameful and useless lot they are!!

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