MTN makes first key Investcom personnel appointment

MTN Nigeria launched operations in 2001, and now services more than 9 million customers on its network.

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By  Tawanda Chihota Published  July 20, 2006

Ahmad Farroukh has been appointed as chief executive officer of MTN Nigeria, replacing Sifiso Dabengwa, MTN Group’s chief operating officer (COO), who was deployed to Nigeria in August 2004 to head the operation on a medium-term contract. Dabengwa will now focus on his responsibility as MTN Group COO. Farroukh has more than a decade of experience in mobile telecommunications, in strategy, finance and corporate development. He has hands-on management experience in mobile projects in 10 countries and gained his telecommunication experience through senior executive positions held with Investcom Holdings. Investcom Telecom was acquired by MTN in May. MTN Nigeria launched operations in 2001, and now services more than 9 million customers on its network. Meanwhile, it has been reported that Transcorp, a company that earlier this month announced that it had successfully bid for a 75% stake in Nigerian state telco NITEL for US$750 million, has been given until the middle of September to pay off the bid amount. The company failed to reach a payment deadline July 13 for an amount of US$500 million, instead paying just US$75 million, amounting to 10% of the total amount offered. Nigeria’s Bureau for Public Enterprise (BPE) is thus reported to have granted the 60-day extension after Transcorp raised several issues regarding the need to follow international banking practices relating to securing of loans and disbursements. Transcorp's technical partners are BT Group and Etisalat, and it has been suggested that Transcorp is trying to renegotiate the equity position in the partnership, possibly reducing its stake in NITEL from 75% (made up of 51% to Transcorp and 24% to a foreign technical partner) to 38% to Transcorp and 37% to the foreign technical partner.

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