Celtel International, a subsidiary of MTC Group of Kuwait, has announced that it has concluded a transaction to acquire a controlling 65% stake of Vee Networks, one of Nigeria’s four wireless operators, for USD1.005 billion. The transaction marks the Middle Eastern company’s largest ever acquisition and will expand Celtel’s presence to 15 markets on the African continent. Vee Networks offers services under the Vmobile brand, with coverage of more than five million customers throughout Nigeria. At the end of 2005 it had an estimated 3.5 million customers, making it the third largest cellco behind MTN Nigeria and Globacom.
Commenting on the transaction, Marten Pieters, CEO of Celtel International, said: ‘This agreement marks Celtel’s most important expansion in Africa to date. Nigeria is one of Africa’s biggest and fastest growing markets and we are delighted that we can bring our extensive expertise and resources to offer Nigerians the best possible quality of services.’