Transcorp enlists 3 new NITEL partners

31 Aug 2007

Transcorp, the parent company of Nigerian incumbent NITEL, has signed a deal with US vendor Cisco, UK telco Cable & Wireless (C&W) and South Africa’s Dimension Data to provide technical assistance and equipment to help the beleaguered telco. ‘They will work together in order to optimise and repair the fibre-optic backbone,’ said Adedayo Ojo, head of corporate affairs at Transcorp, adding, ‘The agreement is expected to generate NGN35 billion (USD277 million) for Transcorp over five years as NITEL’s operations and capacity improve.’ In April this year the UK’s BT Group pulled out of a technical assistance partnership with the Nigerian incumbent citing a lack of funds. Transcorp paid USD750 million in 2006 for 75% of NITEL, including mobile subsidiary M-Tel, and has promised to invest another USD1 billion. Transcorp claims to have already made progress in its efforts to turn NITEL around, including the restoration of 70% of its backbone and the reactivation of M-Tel services in 16 cities, according to a statement released this week.