Telecoms operator 9Mobile has denied media reports that Barclays Africa had pulled out from the sale of the firm. In a press statement posted on its website, the company denied the report, and stated that its board had full confidence in the fairness and transparency of the process.
Contrary to media speculation, Barclays Africa has also not resigned its mandate in the transaction and remains committed to a speedy and satisfactory conclusion of the process, for the avoidance of doubt.”
Prior to this
Earlier media reports had stated that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) had queried the transaction process. CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele in a press conference held after the last Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting feigned ignorance of Barclays withdrawal from the transaction. He however acknowledged that both regulators had noticed anomalies in the process.
What led to the sale
9Mobile (formerly known as Etisalat Nigeria) began operations in 2007. Etisalat had in July this year defaulted on a $1.2 billion loan, due to a devaluation of the Naira. Etisalat of the UAE subsequently pulled out of the company. The consortium were restrained from taking over the telco, but were restrained by the CB. Several of them have however taken provisions on the loan.