London - Econet Wireless group has concluded a $362m loan facility

London - Econet Wireless Group (EWG) has concluded a $362m loan facility to use in some of its African operations.

The facility was arranged by AfriEximbank, and syndicated to development and financial institutions from Germany ( Deutsche Investitions-und Entwicklungsgesellschaft mbH (DEG), France (Societe De Promotion Et De Participation Pour La Cooperation Economique (PROPARCO) , China (China Development Bank Corporation(CDB), the Netherlands (Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij Voor Ontwikkelingslanden N.V. (FMO), South Africa ( Industrial Development Corporation of South Africa (IDC), and Sweden ( Exportkreditnämnden (EKN).

It was signed in London at a special ceremony on May 23 2012, attended by representatives from all the financial institutions. Strive Masiyiwa, the Econet Wireless founder, signed on behalf of his group.

A significant amount of the facility - $307 million - has been earmarked towards, its Zimbabwean subsidiary, Econet Wireless Zimbabwe( EWZ), which is listed on the local exchange.

In a statement, Douglas Mboweni, CEO of the Zimbabwe business, said $255m from the $307m would re-finance existing short-term facilities, whilst $52m will finance equipment purchases for further expansion. He said the tenor of the facilities was an average of 5 years and the blended rate was LIBOR plus 5,3%.

Mr Mboweni noted that borrowing for its expansion projects remained possible only through its parent company.

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