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MTN May Abandon Nigerian Visafone Purchase

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MTN's Nigerian subsidiary is reportedly reconsidering its purchase of local ICT provider Visafone Communications after the regulator moved to block radio spectrum transfers.

Visafone Communications holds a block of 800Mhz spectrum, which it uses for its CDMA based network, and which MTN had been testing for its LTE service.

Now, the company is considering walking away from the USD220 million deal if the regulator blocks the spectrum transfer which would allow MTN to retain Visafone's spectrum following the completion of the purchase.

The regulator had previously approved the deal, but appears to be backtracking, possibly following pressure from the other operators who are lobbying to contain MTN's dominant market share.

In addition, earlier this year, Etisalat filed a lawsuit to block the takover on grounds which date back to the early days of licenses being handed out by the government.

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Tags: mtn  visafone communications  cdma  Nigeria