Today, rumours emerged that MTN Nigeria is in discussions with the owners of 9Mobile, signaling the potential acquisition of a significant stake in the country’s fourth-largest mobile operator, according to a report in Technology Times.
The newspaper said according to reliable sources in the telecoms industry, MTN Nigeria, a subsidiary of South Africa’s MTN Group, and Emerging Markets Telecommunications Services Limited (EMTS), the owners of 9mobile (formerly known as Etisalat Nigeria), are in advanced stages of negotiations concerning a frequency trade arrangement.
This spectrum-focused strategy is being explored as a means to revitalise struggling 9mobile, which has faced challenges following the departure of key technical partners and advisors, namely Mubadala of the UAE and Etisalat of the UAE.
MTN Group, however, has hit back at the rumours, with the company’s spokesperson Nompilo Morafo telling TechFinancials, “MTN Nigeria is not looking to acquire 9Mobile spectrum.
“MTN Nigeria has been exploring national roaming opportunities in Nigeria in line with the group strategy of network as a service,” she added.
“That said, no agreements have been concluded.”
MTN Nigeria has 77.6 million mobile subscribers after adding 2 million new customers in the quarter to end-September 2023.