American Tower, MTN Group Form TowerCo Ghana

Some 1,876 tower sites to be sold as part of joint venture
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American Tower Corp. and the MTN Gropu have entered into a joint venture to form TowerCo Ghana. American Tower will manage operations for the new company.

The transaction involves the sale of up to 1,876 existing MTN Ghana sites, and MTN Ghana will be the anchor tenant on each of the towers purchased. TowerCo Ghana expects to build at least 400 more towers across Ghana for both MTN Ghana and other wiress carriers during the next five years.

The transaction is valued at about US$428.3 million and is expected to close by early 2011.

MTN Group President and CEO Phuthuma Nhleko stated that the sale and joint venture were part of the company’s strategy to reduce infrastructure roll-out costs, as well as on-going operating costs.

“The Ghanaian market has presented us with an opportunity to partner with a leading independent global tower operator. We have already established a good working relationship with the team at American Tower, who have demonstrated their extensive experience in operating towers in both the developed world and in emerging markets,” Nhleko said.

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