Etisalat sues MTN Nigeria over Visafone acquisition

09 February 2016 |

Etisalat Nigeria is suing MTN Nigeria following its acquisition of internet company Visafone Communications.

The unit claims that MTN Nigeria’s decision to buy Visafone would potentially enable it to use Visafone’s 800MHz spectrum, increasing its control over data services in Nigeria. 

“You will recall that MTN Nigeria was declared dominant by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) in 2013 and remains dominant in the wholesale leased line and retail voice markets,” said Etisalat.

“The use of the 800MHz spectrum to deploy broadband services ahead of its competitors, particularly those who prior to MTN’s purchase of Visafone, held similar spectrum bands as MTN, will further entrench MTN’s dominance in the Nigerian telecommunications sector,” the operator added. 

MTN Nigeria announced in January that it has acquired Visafone following long negotiations. The deal is said to have received approval from the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) in December 2015. 

At the end of September 2015, Etisalat had 23 million customers while MTN had 62.5 million subscribers.