Vodacom proceeds with acquisition of Neotel, drops spectrum

Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

Vodacom South Africa announced it will proceed with the acquisition of Neotel, but has dropped the group's spectrum from the deal. In a statement, Vodacom said it reached a a revised agreement with Neotel on a modified transaction that does not include Neotel's spectrum. The new deal will see it acquire the majority of Neotel's assets related to its fixed-line business as a going concern, but excluding Neotel's spectrum licences. At the same time, Neotel will offer a roaming arrangement to all the mobile network operators, including Vodacom South Africa.

The revised agreement addresses some of the concerns of rival operators and regulators that the takeover would give Vodacom too strong a position in terms of spectrum resources. The companies first announced the takeover in May 2014. The telecoms regulator Icasa gave its preliminary approval to the deal in July this year, but Vodacom announced last month that it had started talks with Neotel on revising the terms. Vodacom and Neotel have now submitted the revised agreement to the Competition Tribunal, which has scheduled a pre-hearing for 10 December.
Source: Telecompaper 8 December 2015 http://www.telecompaper.com/news/vodacom-proceeds-with-acquisition-of-ne...

Djibouti Telecom, China Telecom ink cooperation agreement

China Telecom Group has signed a cooperation agreement with Djibouti’s incumbent telco Djibouti Telecom, aimed at supporting it in a number of ongoing development projects in the region. The deal was signed during the sixth China-Africa Forum held in Johannesburg, South Africa, Agence Ecofin reports, marking the conclusion of talks that began two months ago in Hungary, covering topics such as financing and cooperation of China Telecom Group concerning the operator’s network infrastructure plans.

Specifically, Djibouti Telecom is looking to modernise its network to deliver quality improvements to its customers, and to that end has embarked on several separate funding rounds since August 2015. Firstly, it is involved with the Asia Africa Europe-1 (AAE-1) and South-East Asia-Middle East-Western Europe 5 (SeaMeWe-5) submarine cable systems, which are designed to boost the internet gateway. Secondly, unconfirmed reports suggest that the telco is working toward the completion of the so-called ‘DARE’ draft regional fibre-optic submarine cable – again part of the ongoing drive to cement Djibouti’s position as a key ICT hub in the Africa region.
Source: Telegeography 8 December 2015