Mobile subscriber Safaricom has officially withdrawn from Essar’s mobile company Yu purchase not long after the regulator gave the two contenders conditional ownership.
Chief Executive Officer Bob colymore has echoed the move saying the dominating telecommunications company was out of the race to acquire the assets by the time the market regulator set tough conditions for the deal.
Mr Collymore put it clear that the company had been studying the conditions to make a decision whether to get back with the deal or not and did not back out once the regulator put the conditions on the table. “The decision we must make is whether to come back or not,” this was after he declared no interest last week.
The conditions include paying 5.4 million fee for Yu’s license also with it the two telecoms were required to share infrastructure as well as take care of customer money transfer services and SIM registrations. Safaricom also differs with the condition set for them to open up its M-pesa agency network to rivals Airtel, Telkom Kenya Orange and the newly licensed mobile virtual network operators, in which it sort clarification also questioning whether CAK had properly exercised its mandate on the matter considering it directly falls under the purview of the treasury.
The decision comes after the three mobile service companies held a meeting to discuss over the conditions set by the Communications Association of Kenya.
Airtel on the other hand wants to know whether it is required to pay the amount now or wait until next year when it is required to renew its current license acquired from Zain in 2010 even after Airtel CEO Mr Taneja said the conditions are tough and the decisions on them will not be made fast.
Now left for Safaricom to give final decision after looking into opening up the mobile money facility, the company still insists it has taken them years of investment and large amounts of money to build on it to easily give in to the condition.