MTN is planning to sell half of its $655 million stake in Jumia

MTN Group is planning to sell at least half of its 19% stake in Jumia, despite investors’ appetite for the e-commerce firm.

According to bloomberg news, MTN plans to sell in a post-IPO market rally to pay its debt and enter new markets.

MTN, a major shareholder in the e-commerce site with $655 million interest may decide on the plan after a six-month lock period, an MTN spokesman told Bloomberg News.

“We have a six-month lockup period where we can’t sell our shareholding.”

“Post that period we will apply our minds on what to do with the investment,” Bloomberg quoted the spokesperson.

Despite persistent financial losses, investors and analysts remain bullish on the African e-commerce business. According to Bloomberg, Jumia’s shares have tripped since IPO debut and one of the best performing IPOs in New York this year.

MasterCard joined the growing investors in pre-IPO private placement arrangement with $56 million offerings for ordinary shares. Other existing shareholders include French drinks maker Pernod Ricard and Rocket Internet SE.

Jumia’s shares closed at $46.99 per share on Tuesday on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), according to market data seen by Business Insider Sub-Saharan Africa on Thursday.

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