Etisalat Nigeria is set to raise US$500 million to bolster its network expansion plans in the country.
The Chief Commerical Officer, Wael Ammar quoted by Reuters said the debt financing will be sourced from local banks and will be invested in the firm’s network investments to help the firm fulfill its plan to add four million customers this year and 20 million by 2014.
Ammar said: “We are investing $500 million this year to expand our network and services to Nigerian consumers.”
Etisalat Nigeria also plans to increase its existing 3,000 cell sites with the funding. Banking on the fact that Nigeria’s penetration rate is still at 60 percent, Ammar said Etisalat can still grow its customer base.
According to him:”We see the second wave of growth coming from the youth segment. It is a huge segment that will turn into future consumers and the growth will happen across multiple years.”
Etisalat Nigeria has 15 million subscribers and growing. The loan will help it invest in heavily in its network and even expand to cover more areas in the country with a population of over 150 million and over 110 million mobile phone subscribers.