Access Bank, others take over Etisalat Nigeria

Access Bank, others take over Etisalat Nigeria

- A debt restructuring plan agreement between Etisalat Nigeria and a consortium of banks has failed

- Etisalat Group announces the takeover of Etisalat Nigeria by the banks

- The announcement was made by the chief financial officer of Etisalat Group, Serkan Okandan, in a letter dated Tuesday, June 20, 2017

A group of banks comprising of Access Bank PLC and other Nigerian and foreign banks, have taken over the management of Etisalat Nigeria, effective June 15, 2017

Premium Times reports that the takeover follows the inability of the telecom company to meet its debt servicing obligations agreed since 2016 relating to a $1.72 billion (about N541.8 billion) loan facility it obtained from a consortium of banks in 2015.

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The Emerging Markets Telecommunications Services (EMTS) promoted a former chairman, United Bank for Africa (UBA), Hakeem Bello-Osagie, had tried to reach agreement with the banks on debt restructuring plan in the protracted $1.72 billion (about N541.8 billion) debt impasse.

However, following the failure by Hakeem Bello-Osagie to reach the deal between Etisalat and the financial institution, the banks took over management of the company.

However, EMTS Holding BV, established in the Netherlands, has up to June 23 to complete the transfer of 100 percent of the company’s shares in Etisalat to the United Capital Trustees Limited, the legal representative of the consortium of banks.

The takeover of Etisalat Nigeria was announced by Etisalat Group, its parent company, on Tuesday June 20, in a letter filed to the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirate.

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The chief financial Officer of Etisalat Group, Serkan Okandan, in the letter stated that efforts by EMTS to restructure the repayment of the syndicated loan by a consortium of banks to Etisalat Nigeria collapsed.

The leader read in part: "Further to our announcement dated 12 February, 2017, Emirates Telecommunications Group Company PJSC, “Etisalat Group” would like to inform you that Emerging Markets Telecommunications Services Limited “EMTS” (“the company), established in Nigeria and an associate of Etisalat Group with effective ownership of 45% and 25% ordinary and preference shares respectively, defaulted on a facility agreement with a syndicate of Nigerian banks (“EMTS Lenders”).

“Subsequently, discussions between EMTS and the EMTS Lenders did not produce an agreement on a debt restructuring plan.

“Accordingly, the Company received a default and security Enforcement Notice on 9 June 2017 requesting EMTS Holding BV (EMTS BV) established in the Netherlands, and through which Etisalat Group holds its interest in the company) requiring EMTS BV to transfer 100% of its shares in the company to the United Capital Trustees Limited (the Security Trustee”) of the EMTS Lenders by 15 June 2017

“Subsequently the EMTS Lenders extended the deadline for the share transfer to 5.00 pm Lagos time on 23 June 2017.”

In other news, the Nigerian Naira on Monday, June 19 maintained its strengthened rate of N367 per American Dollar at the parallel market.

According to findings, the local currency stayed firm at N367 against the greenback, a rate it has maintained since Wednesday, June 14.

The Naira also retained the N465 rate against the Pound and the N410 against the Euro.

In the video below, TV conducts a survey on how the Ramadan fast is affected the prices of fruits in the market.


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