New Delhi: Telecom operator Bharti Airtel Ltd on Wednesday said it has received regulatory approval to acquire Tigo Rwanda—a subsidiary of Luxembourg-based Millicom International Cellular SA. With this acquisition, Airtel Rwanda operations will become Ebitda positive (operating profit), making whole of Airtel’s Africa business profitable at the operations level.

Ebitda is short for earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization.

“Bharti Airtel Limited...has received an approval for the acquisition of Tigo Rwanda Limited, a subsidiary of Millicom International Cellular SA from the Rwanda Utilities Regulatory Authority (RURA)," the company said in a statement.

The merged entity will have the largest customer base in Rwanda with 5.9 million subscribers, the statement said. “The merger will result in the only negative Ebitda OpCo joining other 13 positive ebitda OpCos in Africa," the statement said.

The combined networks of the two companies will serve customers with voice and data services, global roaming and mobile banking services and also have Rwanda’s largest sales and distribution network. Airtel has operations across 16 countries, which include 14 in Africa.

The company had close to 84 million customers at the end of quarter ended 30 December 2017, the statement said.