Nigeria: 9Mobile – Parties Agree to Timeline Extension

The board of 9mobile yesterday announced the extension of the timeline for closure of the telco’s acquisition process.

The timeline extension was considered necessary to enable parties involved in the sale process to finalise the requisite transaction documentation to facilitate a smooth closure and transition to the new investor, 9mobile CEO Boye Olusanya said in a statement yesterday.

“The board of 9mobile is pleased with the progress made thus far and expects the acquisition process to be completed as soon as possible. Further updates in this regard will be provided in due course.

“We hereby thank our invaluable customers for their support and reiterate our continuing commitment to providing best-in-class telecommunication service,” Olusanya also said.

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) and Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) met on Tuesday with other key stakeholders in the sale process of 9mobile to discuss ways to conclude the takeover of the telco, Daily Trust reports.

Etisalat, now 9mobile, ran into problem last year when it failed to pay back in full a $1.2 billion loan facility it took from a number of banks.

The loan issue made one of its major shareholders, Telecoms Company of United Arab Emirates (Etisalat Group), to pull out of the company.

The NCC and CBN moved in to sell the company to competent telecom investor to prevent it from being taken over by the banks.

One of the buyers that signified intentions to buy the company, Teleology Holdings Limited, emerged winner in the bid process, and even went ahead to pay $50 million deposit. But it has yet to take over the company due to a number of legal issues by shareholders.

“The sale process of 9mobile is going on fine. We shall meet tomorrow (today) with key stakeholders in the sale process to talk the way forward.

“I am assuring you that Nigerians will hear good news on 9mobile very soon,” the NCC Executive Vice Chairman, Prof Umar Garba Danbatta, said.

Source: Daily Trust Nigeria