Etisalat Group exits Nigeria

The telecommunication group Etisalat has terminated its management agreement with Nigerian arm and allowed the business time to phase out the brand’s name in Nigeria. 

Last week, the Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) interposed to help Etisalat Nigeria from collapsing after talks with its consortium of 13 local lenders to renegotiate a $1.2 billion loan collapsed. 

Etisalat, owning 45 per cent Stake in the Nigerian Business had been ordered to transfer its shares to a loan trustee after the failed talks. Hatem Dowidar, CEO of Etisalat, said all the UAE shareholders of Etisalat Nigeria, including Mubadala the state-owned investment fund, had exited the company and the management board. He mentioned that discussions were ongoing with Etisalat Nigeria to provide technical support, adding that it could continue to use the brand for another three weeks before phasing it out. He added however, “There’s a new board and we are not part of that company. We have sent our termination letter for the management agreement,”

The Vice President (Regulatory and Corporate Affairs) at Etislat Nigeria also known as Emerging Markets Telecommunication Services Ltd. (EMTS), Ibrahim Dikko, said “Nigeria remains the soul of EMTS’ business and we have made the brand alluring to our teeming subscribers who see a piece of the spirit and character of Nigeria in everything we do. EMTS is here to stay and we wish to assure our esteemed customers that our core values of youthfulness, customer-centricity and innovation will remain the pillars on which we operate. We thank our esteemed customers for their abiding faith in us.”