South African mobile operator Vodacom has confirmed that the company is officially in talks to acquire 100% of telecommunications provider Neotel. There has been market speculation as to a possible deal, but neither party has officially confirmed that they have entered into talks. The deal is said to be worth approx. R5-billion.
“The finalisation of the transaction is subject to the successful conclusion of commercial negotiations and receiving the requisite regulatory and corporate approvals. This transaction, if concluded, would stimulate greater competition in the South African fixed telecommunications sector and will accelerate the provision of high-speed data links,” Vodacom said in a statement.
Vodacom added that the deal would provide the new company the ability to provide better services for South African users. “It would also result in the combined entity being able to offer an expanded product range and, as a consequence, enhanced customer choice.”
“By further building on the capabilities within Neotel, we would also aim to develop entirely new services such as fibre to the home and business. Neotel has access to over 15 000km of fibre-optic cable, including 8 000km of metro fibre in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban,” added group CEO Shameel Joosub.
In a recent interview with ITNewsAfrica, Neotel CEO Sunil Joshi described ongoing rumours of a sale of the company as speculation.
Charlie Fripp – Consumer Tech editor