Ooredoo Group entered discussions with Zain Group and UAE-based TASC Towers about combining their tower assets across six countries in the Middle East and North Africa into a jointly owned independent company.

In a joint statement, the operators noted the proposed cash and share deal covers 30,000 towers in Qatar, Kuwait, Algeria, Tunisia, Iraq and Jordan, and would create the largest tower company in the MENA region.

They stated the transaction has the potential to boost shareholder value “through a more efficient capital structure”.

It also offers the chance to “enhance the operational and carbon efficiency of passive tower infrastructure, supporting the reduction of MENA’s carbon footprint”.

The combined company would continue to operate as a standalone entity, providing passive infrastructure.

Ooredoo and Zain will retain their respective active infrastructure, including wireless communication antennas, software and IP.

The trio are holding exclusive negotiations and aim to sign definitive agreements in the current quarter though Ooredoo towers in Oman are omitted.

Any final deal is subject to securing the required corporate and regulatory approvals.