Telkom edges closer to sealing BCX deal

Johannesburg - Telecoms company Telkom is one step closer to obtaining approval for its bid to buy black-owned ICT services provider Business Connexion (BCX).

Last year, Telkom announced plans to buy BCX for R2.7bn. The deal is pending final approval from regulators.

But Telkom said in a market update on Monday evening that it has already obtained approval from one regional regulatory body, the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) Competition Commission.

BCX has operations in Botswana, Kenya, Namibia, Nigeria, Mozambique, South Africa, Tanzania and Zambia. BCX has also previously stated that it has more than 6 800 staff on the African continent and generates revenue in excess of R6 billion per annum.

“We wish to inform shareholders that the COMESA Competition Commission has unconditionally approved the proposed transaction,” said Telkom in a market update on Monday evening.

“The last remaining conditions precedent to the proposed transaction are (i) the approval of the South Africa Competition Authorities; (ii) to the extent required, the approval by the Independent Communication Authority of South Africa (Icasa) and (iii) the issue of a compliance certificate by the Takeover Regulation Panel in terms of section 119(4)(b) of the Companies Act,” read the Telkom statement.

Earlier this year, Telkom also announced that approval required from Icasa could be limited in nature.

After reviewing the Electronic Communication Act, Telkom said that the Icasa application for the transfers of licences from BCX to Telkom is no longer required.

“On reviewing these elements, the view has been taken that the application for the transfers of licences from BCX to Telkom will not be required. The application for the licence transfer was therefore withdrawn from Icasa,” Telkom said at the time.

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