On The Money - In Brief

Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

- Vodafone, formerly Ghana Telecom, says the evolution of Ghana Telecom to Vodafone was expected to involve a process of transformation that would result in the restructuring of the business to provide the agility and strength to be able to compete successfully for the benefit of customers and shareholders.

- Kenya’s Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) company, Kencall, has been nominated for the non-European Call Centre of the Year Award giving a boost to the country's global image in this nascent sector. The CCF European Call Centre Awards recognise industry best practice in 20 different categories ranging from Best Use of Technology and Best Multimedia Strategy to the European Call Centre of the Year and CCF Industry Champion awards.

- Technology group Dimension Data expects to deliver a good performance for the second half of its financial year, after a third quarter where a mainly upward trend was tempered with a few downs. Pushing up the profit margin is a key goal for Didata and at the beginning of this year its margin had climbed back to 4%, with a medium-term target of 5%.

- France Telecom (FT) has once again appealed against the rejection of a bid for the remaining share in the Egyptian Company for Mobile Services (MobiNil), Bloomberg reports. The move comes after the Egyptian Capital Market Authority (CMA) rebuffed FT’s third offer for the outstanding stake; the French company’s previous appeal was rejected on 4 August. A committee will rule on the appeal within 60 days. FT has also indicated it may pursue the matter through the Egyptian Supreme Court.

- Kuwait-based mobile group Zain is in talks with three major telecoms firms over the sale of all or part of its African operations, Kuwaiti daily Al-Rai reports, citing Zain CEO Dr Saad Al Barrak. Zain is currently in the midst of a strategic review and plans to hold an extraordinary general meeting on 31 August when shareholders will be asked to vote on amending its ownership restrictions, potentially allowing individual investors to hold more than a 2% stake in the company.

- MTN and India's Bharti Airtel have once again extended the period of exclusivity discussions to the end of next month. This is the second time the companies have pushed out the time frame for the deal that could see one of them becoming the third largest global mobile operator, next to China Mobile and Vodafone.

- Zain Malawi has been accused of evading import taxes after a local newspaper found that import declarations were being changed without notifying the customs officials. The Nyasa Times reported that a shipment claimed to be network switching equipment was substituted for air conditioning units, which are subject to import taxes. After the matter was raised with Zain officials they agreed that there was breach of taxation procedures and the company agreed to pay MRA MK4.7 million [around US$34,000] for the goods," said a source at a Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) office who spoke on condition of strict anonymity.