Etisalat is said to be considering the sale following a break down of relations with the majority shareholder, Malaysia’s Axiata Group.
“Etisalat thinks it hasn’t been treated well in this deal… the reality is that the relationship soured a bit with the new management of Axiata,” a source — who declined to be identified because of the sensitivity of the matter — told theReuters news agency.
Etisalat paid US$40 million for the stake in XL Axiata in 2007.
The mobile network operator is 84% owned by Axiata Group, with the remainder held by Etisalat, and a tiny amount floated on the stock market.
Etisalat has hired JPMorgan and Morgan Stanley to handle the sale, which may launch via an equity placement, the sources said.