9Mobile Sale: NCC Confirms Teleology Bid, Gives 90 Days Ultimatum to Pay $450m Balance

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The sale of 9Mobile, Nigeria’s fourth largest teleco, is nearly complete. According to reports by Business Day Newspapers, the preferred bidder, Teleology Holdings, has completed the payment of $301 million needed to take over the teleco.

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has confirmed Teleology Holdings Limited’s payment of the initial deposit of $50 million for the acquisition of 9Mobile Nigeria Limited. The regulatory body has also  given the company 90 days to pay up the balance of $450 million upon which the ownership of 9Mobile would be immediately conferred to it.

This is the first time the commission is publicly confirming the payment by Teleology Holdings. It is coming days after the NCC and CBN denied knowledge of any payment by Teleology at a hearing by the House of Representatives.

Led by Adrian Wood (Former CEO of MTN Nigeria), Teleology Holdings Limited emerged as the preferred bidder in the sale of 9Mobile, ahead of about 16 companies that tendered expressions of interest (Eols) in February. Since its emergence, it has been making efforts to takeover the telco, including the payment of the $50 million nonrefundable deposit and releasing its agenda for 9Moblile.

Speaking on the issue, Prof. Garba Umar Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman of the NCC said yesterday that 9mobile will be handed over to Teleology after the payment of the balance is completed within the given period of time.

Well, the information I have for you is that the preferred bidder has emerged and it has been told to pay. Starting with a deposit of $50 million which the preferred bidder has paid, we have information to this effect. What remains is for the preferred bidder to pay the balance of $450 million in the next 90 days, or less than 90 days, anyway. And upon payment of that amount, 9Mobile would be transferred to the preferred bidder, which is Teleology Holdings Limited.

This confirmation by the NCC have succeeded in putting to rest speculations that a top official has been working against Teleology’s 9Mobile take over.

Smile Communications Limited (SCL), the reserved bidder for the 9mobile deal.
Smile Communications Limited (SCL), the reserved bidder for the 9mobile deal.

However, failure to make this payment within the stipulated time would mean that Teleology Holdings would lose the right to take over the company. If this happens, Smile Communications Limited (SCL), the reserved bidder, might take its place.

 


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