American Tower Is Said to Eye MTN's South African Assets

A pedestrian checks his mobile handset as he passes a giant logo outside the headquarters of MTN Group Ltd. in Johannesburg. Photographer: Nadine Hutton/Bloomberg

MTN Group Ltd., Africa’s largest wireless carrier, has received interest from American Tower Corp. for at least a part of the network of about 9,000 towers it’s selling in South Africa, according to people familiar with the matter.

The assets are valued at $1.5 billion to $2 billion, said one of the people, who asked not to be identified because the matter is private. Johannesburg-based MTN has been holding talks with potential buyers, though a deal is unlikely to happen before the end of the year, the people said. MTN may decide to keep a part of the assets, they said.

Tower sales help companies like MTN raise cash from their antenna properties by giving tower operators the ability to rent space on cell sites to other carriers. American Tower has been on a buying spree with three acquisitions announced in the past five months, including a deal in Nigeria.

Read more: American Tower Is Said to Eye MTN’s South African Assets – Bloomberg Business.