Emerging markets operator offloads Tigo Senegal to financial services platform.

Millicom on Monday announced that it has agreed to sell its mobile operation in Senegal to local digital financial services specialist Wari in a deal worth US$129 million.

The telco did not provide further comment on the deal, other than to say that it requires regulatory approvals in order to go ahead.

Millicom is in the process of reshaping its portfolio, selling certain assets in order to focus on its strongest markets. It closed the sale of its Tigo operation in the Democratic Republic of Congo to Orange in April and various media reports since then have suggested that its assets in Ghana and Chad – as well as Senegal – could be up for grabs. Last year Orange was named as a possible buyer for all three.

But in the end the Senegal business, which also operates under the Tigo banner, went to Wari.

"By pooling the advantages of mobile telephony offered by Tigo and the world of benefits provided by Wari, a leading platform for digital financial services, we combine the expertise, energies and ambitions of our teams and our two groups in order to offer more convenient and affordable services to users," Wari CEO Kabirou Mbodje said, in a statement.

Dakar-based Wari offers a range of digital financial services, including money transfer, bill payment and mobile top-ups. Given the growth of the mobile financial services ecosystem in recent years, teaming up with a mobile operator makes perfect sense for the company.