South Africa-based telecoms group Econet continued discussions with Millicom regarding potential asset acquisitions, as the company also mulled listing $1 billion worth of shares on the London Stock Exchange in 2018.

According to Bloomberg sources, Econet, which was first linked with a deal for Millicom’s African assets in October, is attempting to thrash out a deal, although a final decision is yet to be reached. Millicom reportedly wants to scale back its focus in Africa to step up its interests in Latin America, and is looking to divest holdings in Tanzania, Chad, Ghana and Rwanda.

For Econet, a potential move for such assets could complement its operations in Zimbabwe and South Africa.

$8B valuation
Meanwhile, Econet, founded by Zimbabwean tycoon Strive Masiyiwa (pictured), is also mulling an IPO in London, based on a valuation of about $8 billion after it completes a process of combining its new and existing assets.

Sources said the valuation would be based on an enlarged company, forged through the acquisition of additional African businesses.

It is unclear at this stage whether a potential acquisition of Millicom’s assets would contribute to the valuation.

Bloomberg noted the valuation may change, subject to market conditions, and the plans are yet to be finalised.

Econet hopes to raise $1 billion from listing new shares in London and the company could also hold a secondary listing in Johannesburg, South Africa.

The company, which holds interests in 17 countries, is expanding as part of a bid to attract international investors to fund potential new acquisitions, added Bloomberg’s report.