DAKAR (Reuters) - Senegalese money transfer firm Wari said on Tuesday that it will pursue legal action against Luxembourg-based Millicom International Cellular if the company proceeds to cancel a deal to sell its Senegal subsidiary Tigo to Wari.
Millicom said in a statement on Monday that it had terminated an agreement to sell Tigo to Wari and would instead sell the business to a consortium consisting of NJJ, Sofima (a telecom investment vehicle managed by Axian Group) and Teyliom Group.
According to the initial agreement announced in February, Wari was to purchase Tigo for $129 million.
A Millicom spokesperson said in an email to Reuters that Wari had not provided the financing required for the deal and that the telecom consortium had approached them with an alternative offer.
Wari denied that, saying that it had paid an initial deposit and was following the agreed timeline for subsequent payments, with the next one planned by Sept. 30.
“Wari stresses that this announcement is strongly denounced by the highest authorities in Senegal and that it will be the subject of legal proceedings if Millicom persists in its unilateral decision,” the company said in a statement.
Wari’s acquisition of Tigo, Senegal’s second largest mobile operator, was seen as a challenge to French telecoms giant Orange’s dominance of Francophone West Africa’s mobile market.
Reporting by Nellie Peyton; Editing by Tim Cocks and Louise Heavens