Helios Towers Plc entered the South African market by forming a partnership with Vulatel Pty Ltd. to build out wireless and fixed-line infrastructure in the country.
Helios Towers expects South Africa to lead the way on 5G rollout in sub-Saharan Africa, it said in a statement on Monday.
Establishing a towers business in South Africa could help pave the way for a long-planned initial public offering, after the U.K. company and two African rivals were forced to abandon share-sale plans last year.
Helios and its peers are desperate to raise cash for expansion across Africa countries, where the emergence of 5G networks and accelerating broadband take up presents a growth opportunity.
South Africa is one of the more stable of those markets, and Helios suspects that there may be opportunities to buy towers from wireless carriers such as MTN Group Ltd. and Vodacom Group Ltd.