On The Money - In Brief

Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

- The pre-hearing date for the Competition Tribunal case against Telkom has still not been set and is likely to face another delay. The reason for this delay, according to the Competition Tribunal, is that Telkom needs to file its response to the complaint before a date can be set for the hearing. It had until 28 February to file the necessary papers, but failed to do so.

- Credibility of Kenya's economic data is set to come into sharp with the launch of a new consumer price index that has a downward bias for measuring the cost of living. Food now accounts for only 36.04 per cent of the CPI (a select basket of goods and services used to track price movements) - down from 50.2 per cent in the old basket.

The new CPI also comes with new items including airtime, cellular phones, boda boda fares and parking charges for a total of 12 up from 10.

- South African mobile operator Cell C has clammed up on a possible deal to sell its national network of base stations to mitigate crippling debt. Reports indicate the company is discussions with two international businesses: American Tower Corp and Eaton Telecom. However, Cell C will not confirm whether it has decided to sell its infrastructure to generate a financial cushion.

- Mobile provider Econet is making attempts to block any possible sale of Zain Nigeria to Bharti Airtel of India. According to Bloomberg, CEO of Econet, Strive Masiyiwa says his company has the first option to buy the stake acquired by Zain. Econet owns 5 percent of Zain Nigeria, which is 65 percent held by Bahrain-based Zain. Zain is in talks to sell its African operations to Bharti for $10.7 billion.

- South Africa IT company, Faritec will proceed with a rights offer to raise the R60 million it needs to keep operating. The company said late last year that it needed to raise R60 million to implement its turnaround and growth strategies, pay creditors and cover working capital. Faritec is targeting a return to profitability this year, after being hammered by the global recession that hit the world in late 2008.