Few weeks back, Mubadala Group, the major investor from the United Arab Emirates, pulled out of Nigeria’s fourth largest mobile operator, due to a $1.2 billion debt.
They earlier directed Etisalat Nigeria to stop using its brand name within the next three weeks. ETC, the largest shareholder in the firm, had since terminated its management agreement with its Nigerian arm.
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According to our source, the implication of the directive is that the new management must decide within the next 21 days on the options before it, which are either an outright sale of the company or merger with an existing operator in the country.
A board was appointed at Etisalat Nigeria, to handle the smooth transition of the telecommunications company after a reallocation of shares.
Boye Olusanya, former deputy managing director of Celtel Nigeria (now Airtel Nigeria), was appointed as the chief executive officer of Etisalat Nigeria to over see the transition.
Etisalat Nigeria has on Thursday, July 13th, at the end of a management meeting in Lagos changed its name to 9Mobile after weeks of reported crises.
NCC has warned the creditors that the licence awarded to Etisalat Nigeria is not transferable, effectively stopping the banks from taking ownership of the company.
Etisalat, which controls 13 per cent market share in Nigeria, has had a running battle with a consortium of 13 banks since March, after it notified them of its inability to service its $1.2 billion debt in February due to the foreign exchange challenges in the country.
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