The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has said that the new deadline to conclude bidding for the acquisition of 9Mobile is Jan. 16, as against Dec. 31, 2017, the former date.
The Director, Public Affairs of NCC, Mr Tony Ojobo, said that the extension was because there had not been any preferred bidder for the acquisition of 9Mobile in a statement on Friday.
Ojobo said that an approval of the request for extension of time by the 9Mobile Interim Board was given by the two regulators, NCC and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
He said that the approval set the deadline for the receipt of biding offers from the prospective bidders till Jan. 16, 2018.
“Our attention has been drawn to newspaper publications alleging that a preferred bidder has been anointed to acquire 9Mobile and otherwise speculating on the outcome of the ownership transfer process.
“For the avoidance of doubt, we wish to provide clarification that Barclays Africa remains in full control of the process leading to the emergence of a new owner for the company.
“Barclays has not authorised any publication on the matter and is obliged to maintain full confidentiality thereon.
“Contrary to speculations that a winner will be announced on the same day (Jan.16), we wish to clarify that Barclays is expected to review the bids received by the deadline and to make recommendations to the 9Mobile Interim Board thereafter,’’ Ojobo said.
He said that the NCC and the CBN would be duly notified once the 9Mobile Interim Board accepted Barclays’ recommendations and a winning bid was determined in accordance with the terms of the exercise.
According to him, the winner will now apply to NCC, in order to commence the processes for securing the regulatory approvals necessary for full effect of the transfer.