NITEL’s third-placed bidder makes renewed offer for telco

11 Aug 2011

Nigerian newspaper This Day reports that Brymedia Consortium is the latest company to make an offer for state-owned fixed line incumbent Nigeria Telecommunications (NITEL), after the most recent attempt to sell the ailing telco was cancelled earlier this year. One of the initial bidders for NITEL, Brymedia came third during the bidding process for the telco in February 2010, offering USD551 million for a 75% stake in NITEL (excluding its CDMA network) and its mobile arm M-Tel. The consortium has now offered to pay USD900 million to acquire the telco, and – if successful in its bid – has pledged to put NITEL back on its feet within 18 months.

TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database states that the latest attempt to privatise NITEL and M-Tel was cancelled in June when the reserve bidder, British Virgin Islands-based Omen International, failed to meet the deadline to pay a bid security. Omen was invited to re-register its interest in buying NITEL in March 2011, as preferred buyer New Generation Telecommunications repeatedly missed the payment deadlines for its bid of USD2.5 billion. Omen offered USD956.9 million during the most recent auction for the company, held in February 2010. The government began seeking a buyer for a minimum 75% of NITEL and 100% of M-Tel in July 2009 after previous majority shareholder Transcorp divested its stake earlier in the year.

Nigeria, ntel (formerly NITEL/M-Tel)