Bharti Airtel to acquire 100% MENA-SCS stake from Orascom

21 December 2016 | Jason McGee-Abe


Bharti Airtel has entered into an exclusive agreement with Orascom to acquire the Middle East North Africa Submarine Cable System (MENA-SCS).

MENA-SCS - 690x420In a filing with the National Stock Exchange of India yesterday, Bharti Airtel disclosed that it has entered into a definitive agreement, subject to requisite regulatory approvals, with Orascom to acquire its entire equity stake in MENA-SCS. Bharti Airtel stated that the acquisition would strengthen its global network and “the additional capacity will enable Airtel to serve the growing demand for data services and enterprise services across its footprint of 18 countries across South Asia and Africa”.

"The proposed acquisition underlines our commitment to provide world-class service experience to the customers. MENA-SCS will be a good addition to our global network portfolio and provide us with a high quality and diversified new route to Western Europe and the rest of the world,” said Ajay Chitkara, director and CEO of global voice and data business at Bharti Airtel.

"With the explosion of data usage in emerging markets, including India and Africa, this asset will provide us a scalable and diverse high capacity highway to serve our customers. In particular, it will provide impetus to India's emergence as a major regional internet hub serving customers across SAARC region, with seamless global connectivity".

MENA-SCS owns and operates a subsea cable network, capable of carrying multi-Tbps of data speeds between India and Europe covering the Middle East, with options to extend the network to Africa. The MENA cable, which connects Mumbai, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Italy, is already live and operational. The cable has further branching options to connect to countries in Europe, Africa and the Middle East via Cyprus, Greece, Djibouti, Yemen, Iraq, Lebanon, Libya and Sudan.