It appears Teleology Holdings made a bid of $301 million for troubled Nigerian operator 9mobile, $200 million less than was widely reported, which raises some questions over the deal.
Nigerian national This Day reported “the public was made to believe” Teleology had $450 million left to pay after making a $50 million non-refundable deposit for 9mobile.
However, last month a letter from United Capital Trustees, one of the companies handling the deal, was presented by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to the country’s House of Representatives, which said a balance of only $251 million was left to be paid.
This was around the same time a federal court in Nigeria said the deal must be put on hold until an issue with shareholders was sorted out.
The discrepancy in figures means Teleology’s bid was only $1 million more than the $300 million reserve bidder Smile Telecoms had offered. The company has been eager to jump in and believes it is better suited to turn 9mobile’s business around.
Smile Telecoms previously voiced concerns about how Barclays Africa handled the deal and sought a review of the bidding process: it may well make some noise over this new development.
NCC CEO Umar Garba Danbatta recently reaffirmed the regulator wants to scrutinise the technical capability and background of the company which will acquire 9mobile. The NCC said in the past it wants Teleology to prove it holds the right technical capacity to run 9mobile.