(Bloomberg) -- Telkom SA SOC Ltd. is in advanced talks to sell its tower assets to a private equity firm. 

“Shareholders are hereby advised that Telkom is currently in exclusive negotiations with a preferred bidder in respect of the potential disposal of Swiftnet,” the Johannesburg-based company said in a statement on Tuesday. “The preferred bidder is a consortium of equity investors, including a black economic empowerment partner, led and managed by a reputable private equity firm.”

A deal — if concluded — would be subject to South African regulatory and shareholder approval, it said. There are no guarantees that the negotiations would lead to a transaction, Telkom said. 

Swiftnet was estimated to be worth about 8.7 billion rand ($475 million) based on future expected cash flows, according to a previous note from Nedbank Group Ltd.

Read More: Telkom 1H Net Income 973M Rand Vs. 639M Rand Y/y

Mobile-phone companies have increasingly sought to spin off towers to focus on their core business, with Vodafone Group Plc’s African unit Vodacom separating its portfolio into a new unit and MTN Group Ltd. concluding a sales-and-lease back tower deal with IHS Holdings Ltd. in 2021.

Telkom, South Africa’s third-largest operator, previously abandoned a plan to list Swiftnet.

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