The Nigerian regulatory agency, Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the telecommunication giant, MTN Group had commenced discussions on the proposed $500 million Initial Public Offering (IPO), top management official disclosed to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).

A senior management official of SEC who pleaded anonymity said MTN had commenced discussion with the commission on the IPO.

According to NAN, the source reiterated SEC’s commitment to investors’ protection, and that their interest would be protected in the ongoing discussion, adding that SEC would remain committed to the development of the nation’s capital market and the listing of more multinationals.

Another source at the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), who declined to be mentioned, also said the NSE had not yet received an official filing from the company.

The source said although talks were ongoing, the telco was yet to formally file its application for the IPO.

Rob Shuter, MTN Group CEO stated this in an interview in Lagos on Tuesday, April 10, 2018, that the telcom is progressing with the Nigerian listing.

“We are progressing very well with the Nigerian listing and if market conditions are appropriate, we will conclude that by the end of the year,” Shuter had said.

Standard Bank Group Ltd., Citigroup Inc., and some other lenders had been appointed to advise MTN group on its listing on Nigerian Stock Exchange.

MTN had agreed to list the Nigerian unit as part of the June 2016 agreement it entered into with the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to resolve a record $5.2 billion fine in October 2015 over their failure to deactivate 5 million unregistered SIM cards. An amount the government later reduced to $1 billion (N330 billion), payable over the three years.