VODACOM MOVES TO REOPEN TALKS WITH NIGERIA'S VMOBILE

Telecoms

South Africa's Vodacom, which pulled out of Nigeria in controversial circumstances barely two months after officially taking over the management of former Econet Wireless Nigeria, Vee Network Limited, is now ready to reopen negotiation to acquire equity interest in the Nigerian company. This change of mind, THISDAY authoritatively reports, was said to have been communicated in a letter dated November 23 to the Chairman of VMobile, Gamaliel Onosode, by Vodacom's Group Chief Executive Officer, Alan Knott-Craig.

A reliable source at Vodacom who confirmed this development last weekend also told THISDAY that the South African company's pullout of Nigeria was "unfortunate", adding that "it is so bad now that our competitor, MTN Group, has now finally taken over from us by becoming the largest mobile network in Africa in terms of subscriber base, revenue and profit because of their investments in Nigeria"."When MTN declared its results penultimate week, it upset all the records we had held on to and this caused us to sit down and reassess our business plan and we have discovered that pulling out of Nigeria may have been a wrong decision", the source said.

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