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Privatisation: BPE warns Nitel/Mtel bidders to honour deadline

By on November 7, 2014

The Director General, Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), Mr. Benjamin Dikki, has advised the prequalified bidders in the Guided Liquidation of NITEL/MTEL to strictly stick to the Friday deadline for the submission of the technical and financial proposals, warning that no proposal will be entertained “even if it is one minute after the closing time for submission.”

Speaking in Abuja while declaring open a pre-bid conference for the guided liquidation of NITEL/MTEL, organised by the liquidator, he added that bidders were free to submit their proposals before the deadline, but emphasised that bidders must endeavor to submit their proposals as scheduled, adding that the bureau is a stickler of time and deadlines without any compromise.

According to a statement by the privatisation agency, the conference had the two prequalified bidders and other telecommunications stakeholders in attendance and was meant to provide a platform for prequalified bidders to seek clarification and resolve issues that might  arise prior to preparing their technical and financial proposals, given that they have concluded a two-week data room and physical due diligence.

The two prequalified consortia are Messrs NETTAG Consortium and Natcom Consortium.

The DG noted that the pre-bid conference is an important milestone in the privatisation of NITEL and MTEL.

In his overview of the liquidation transaction, the Liquidator, Chief Olutola Senbore, noted that the objectives of the current exercise include the disposal of assets and business units of NITEL and MTEL as one entity; and the need to select bidders/investors through a competitive bidding system that have the technical and financial wherewithal to continue to run the two telecomm giants as going concerns.
He also noted that the preferred bidder “must have the capability to turn around the business acquired into first class telecommunications companies.”

Senbore said the exercise was different from past ones because it is a disposal of assets and businesses without encumbrances since they are free of liabilities.
He said the transaction “by way of guided liquidation is more plausible, more bankable and more attractive.”

Senbore said due diligence would be continuously conducted on the bidders “including security checks as appropriate, and after the opening of financial bids, negotiation with the preferred and reserved bidders would commence to resolve any outstanding issues, especially  on the Post Acquisition Plan.”

The National Council on Privatisation (NCP)  had on February 27, approved the sale of NITEL/MTEL through guided liquidation after several failed attempts in the past to privatise the enterprises. Under the guided liquidation strategy, NITEL and MTEL are to be sold as a single lot to a qualified bidder by a liquidator under the guidance of the bureau.

Senbore whose appointment was confirmed by the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja on March 14, 2014 had commenced the process on March 25 and appointed professionals to work with him as required under the law.

Members of Committee of Inspection (COI) were appointed from significant creditors including equipment vendors, Debt Management Office, First Bank Plc and others.


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