By Dipo Olowookere
The management of Teleology Holdings Limited has asked the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to grant it almost a month grace to complete the process of acquiring the debt-ridden 9mobile.
Teleology was earlier this year announced by Barclays Africa as the preferred bidder of the exercise conducted for the sale of the fourth largest telecommunications firm in Nigeria.
It was then given a 90-day period to pay the amount needed to take over the telco, which changed its name from Etisalat Nigeriia to 9mobile nearly a year ago.
The 90-day period given to Teleology to complete its payment for the acquisition of 9mobile elapsed on Saturday, June 30, 2018.
Teleology had on March 21 paid the initial $50 million non-refundable deposit as a demonstration of its commitment to acquire 9mobile and was given a 90-day timeline to pay the balance.
But sensing it would be unable to meet up with that date, Teleology reportedly wrote to the regulatory agencies, seeking for a 20-working-day extension to pay the final bid price.
According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), the 20-day extension was in the agreement and was only triggered by Teleology.
Quoting a source close to NCC, NAN reports that the regulator has already granted the request by Teleology for the extension but with a provision that it must pay additional non-refundable $50 million to further strengthen its stake in the acquisition bid for 9mobile.
“What Teleology has raised offshore exceeds the initial acquisition cost. It is inclusive of the amount needed for an audacious network expansion project for 9mobile,” a source in NCC said.
“I can confirm this will change the telecoms landscape significantly. The money coming will include the cost of over 5,000 additional base stations and a bullish acquisition of other fringe players in the telecoms sector to add to the 9mobile brand household,” the source added.
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