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Teleology’s Nigerian shareholders in search of funds to close 9mobile deal

By Jumoke Akiyode-Lawanson on 23/05/2018

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Teleology’s Nigerian shareholders Omar Farouk Edewor and Mohammed Edewor who are also the directors of the company are in talks with financial advisers to source equity in-order to pay up the balance of its $301 million financial bid to take over ownership of 9mobile, BusinessDay can exclusively report.

BusinessDay findings reveal that the holding company registered as Teleology Nigeria Limited under the corporate affairs commission (CAC) with the address of 155, Broad Street Marina Lagos, and share capital of N100 million, in December 2017 mainly for the acquisition of 9mobile, Nigeria’s fourth largest telecommunication operator.

Informed sources say that “although Adrian Wood is the promoter of Teleology and part of the management, he is not actively involved in raising equity but the listed company directors, as well as some other partners, are still sourcing funds to close the deal.”

“It is also possible that the Omar Farouk Edewor and Mohammed Edewor are nominee shareholders and the company might decide to do a transfer of shares after the ongoing transaction is closed but right now, all hands are on deck to make sure that the needed money is raised,” Our source said.

Although earlier reports suggest that Teleology is made up of 12 international and eight Nigerian shareholders, the company’s CAC document lists only two shareholders.

Olusola Teniola, President, Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria (ATCON) told BusinessDay that teleology holdings limited which operates as a private equity has hired UBS to help it raise a $300 million bridge loan from local banks and investors.

“The high risk involved in business operations in Nigeria is making it difficult for Teleology to raise the money but they are actively working to make sure that they pay up the balance and close the deal. They still have on till the end of June to pay up so and they should be applauded for all efforts made because raising $251 million is not easy at all, especially in Nigeria,” Teniola said.

Teleology is said to have submitted a financial bid of $301 million dollars which saw it emerge as the preferred bidder in 9mobile’s sale process, living smile which bided a lower sum of $150 million cash as the reserved bidder.

The SPV succeeded in raising the $50 million non-refundable deposit before the March 22, 2018 deadline set for it to pay up and show commitment of interest to take over 9mobile,

However, recent developments such as the addition of new criteria by the NCC chairman, the Senate interruption and court order to stop the process as a result of complaints by minority shareholders of the former Etisalat (now 9mobile) is not an encouraging sign for investors trying to do Business in Nigeria, analysts say.

Teleology has also detailed a 10 point plan to turn over the telco, confident that it will successfully raise and pay its bid balance to own 9mobile.

Adrian Wood, promoter of Teleology and pioneer CEO of MTN Nigeria, revealed the company’s plan to revitalise the debt-ridden 9mobile.

Wood said that new organisation to emerge would be “engineering led and brand driven.” In delivering service, “we will strive to ensure that 9Mobile operations deliver fulfilment to our customers, empowerment to local communities, protection to the vulnerable and excellent rewards not only to our shareholders but to all stakeholders.

In its 10-point plan of action, that aggregates its mission and how it intends to run 9mobile, Teleology confirmed its partnership with Safaricom, the largest network operator in East Africa and popularly known for the huge success of the Mpesa mobile money financial service system in Kenya.

“Teleology intends to double the 9Mobile network with new 3G/4G specific cell sites as well as a several thousands of kilometers of fiber optic cable across the country and also drive a special program of rural internet coverage, focusing on 4G with broadband access planned for all of Nigeria’s 774 Local Government Areas,” Wood said. (BusinessDay)


Source News Express

Posted 23/05/2018 12:33:17 PM


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