Business News in Brief

9mobile Seeks Concessions to Boost Revenues Ahead of Sale

The head of 9mobile, the mobile operator formerly known as Etisalat Nigeria, has asked the telecoms regulator for concessions on spectrum and foreign exchange access to shore up its revenues ahead of finding new investors.

On Tuesday, Central Bank Governor Godwin Emefiele said 9mobile had appointed advisers to find new investors after regulators stepped in to try to save the company from collapse due to it big debts.

Citigroup and Standard Bank have been appointed to manage a sale process and three major investors have shown interest.

Nigeria to Issue ₦229b Treasury Bill Next Week

Nigeria plans to issue 229.14 billion naira ($728.59 mln) in Treasury bills at an auction on Aug. 2, the central bank said, according to Reuters’ report.

The bank said it will issue 29.14 billion naira in three-month bills, 80 billion in six-month paper and 120 billion in one-year bills.

Nigeria's central bank issues Treasury bills twice a month to help the government to finance its budget deficit, curb money supply growth and to help lenders manage their liquidity.

Samsung Topples Apple as World’s Largest Phone Maker

Samsung Electronics is now the world’s largest maker of mobile phones, memory chips and most profitable tech firm, going by its record quarterly earnings released today, AFP reports

The figures show that the South Korean tech giant is on course to overtake Apple as the world’s most profitable tech.

The firm said huge sales of its new Galaxy S8 smartphone and demand for its memory chips were behind the jump in April-June and predicted another blockbuster report for the current quarter to September.

Ambode to Launch Ikeja Bus Terminal

Governor Akinwunmi Ambode will anytime from now launch in Ikeja, capital of Lagos state a world class Bus Terminal, first of its type in Nigeria

The Ikeja Bus Terminal was developed by the State Government as part of the infrastructures for the Lagos Bus Reforms Project.

It will serve as the hub of all transport activities within the Ikeja Zone, serving over 50,000 passengers daily and providing access to many destinations including Oshodi, Ojota, Iyana-Ipaja, Maryland, Agege, Ogba, CMS, Obalende, Iyana-Ipaja, etc.

Debt Office Sells Local Bonds at 16.25%, Same as Inflation Rate

Nigeria sold 10 and 20-year bonds denominated in the local currency at 16.25 percent, the same as the inflation rate, at an auction on Wednesday, auction data showed on Thursday.

Nigeria's annual inflation eased for the fourth straight month in May to 16.25 percent from 17.24 percent in April, while analysts expect the consumer price index to have declined further in June, Reuters reports.

Etisalat Nigeria Now 9Mobile as Banks seek Cash Flow Clarity

Etisalat Nigeria's rescue has put the country's banks in a quandary as they prepare for half-year results due this month as they do not know whether to provision for loans to the company until they can work out its value, Reuters reports.

A banking source told Reuters that the lenders first wanted to determine Etisalat Nigeria's free cash flow to help them value the telecoms business before deciding on whether to impair the assets or hold on to find new investors.

Insurer Prudential Enters Nigeria

British insurer Prudential said it had bought a majority stake in Nigeria's Zenith Life to give it access to the African country's fast-growing insurance market, Reuters reports.

It said it had also signed a deal with the Nigerian insurer's parent Zenith Bank Plc to sell life and other insurance products via the bank in Nigeria and Ghana.

"Today's announcement is an important milestone for Prudential and our growing portfolio of high-quality life insurance businesses in Africa," Matt Lilley, chief executive of Prudential Africa.

Etisalat Nigeria's New CEO Targets Profit after Regulator Rescue

Etisalat Nigeria is focused on getting the telecoms group back on track to make a profit after it was saved from collapse, while working on the paperwork to eventually raise new capital.

"Our mandate is to make sure the business runs as profitably as it can. What is most important now is to ... ensure that the business runs and meets its obligations," the company's new chief executive Boye Olusanya told Reuters on Tuesday.

NAICOM Queries Erring Insurance Companies

The National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) says it has approved 39 out of 49 insurance companies 2016 financial reports submitted to it.

The Head, Corporate Affairs of the commission, Mr Rasaaq Salami said in a statement on Thursday in Abuja that reports of two companies were queried, while eight were undergoing review.

Salami named the queried companies to be Nigeria Reinsurance Corporation and KBL Insurance Ltd.

Microfinance Bank Gets Citibank’s ₦500m Loan

The Citibank (Citi) has granted a N500 million loan to Accion Microfinance Bank (Accion MFB) as part of efforts to promote the development of the microfinance sector in Nigeria.

Lola Oyeka, the bank’s Country Public Affairs Officer for Nigeria and Ghana made the announcement in a statement she issued on Tuesday in Lagos.

According to her,the grant will fund Accion’s loan portfolio and support the development of approximately 5,000 micro and small enterprises in the country.