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Neotel, Transtel merger gets green light

Acquisition adds $49 million in revenues for Neotel

South Africa's Competition Tribunal on Wednesday approved the acquisition of Transtel Telecoms, the telecoms arm of state-owned utility group, Transnet, by Neotel, the country's second national operator.

Valued at R230 million ($29.09 million), the acquisition was originally accepted last April, bringing Transtel R400 million ($49.26 million) in annual revenues from enterprise customers and 500 employees to Neotel. The operator's wholly-owned subsidiary, Amsbury, is set to take over Transtel's voice, data and network services.

The purchase sees Neotel expand its operations to more than 100 locations, extending its footprint across the country with substantial last-mile infrastructure.

Neotel's MD, Ajay Pandey, said last year: "This acquisition provides us a platform for introducing our next-generation services for businesses, providing us a nation-wide presence instantaneously, and therefore the ability to serve the diverse and geographically dispersed needs of our customers."

The deal is part of Transnet's greater strategy to dispose of non-core businesses in an effort to focus on rail, port, infrastructure and operations.