Please Call Me never treated as income generative - Vodacom

Vodacom. (Duncan Alfreds, Fin24)
Vodacom. (Duncan Alfreds, Fin24)

Johannesburg - The Please Call Me service was never treated as revenue generative, Vodacom spokesperson Byron Kennedy told Fin24. 

This comes after the creator of the service, Nkosana Makate, dismissed Vodacom’s claims that the company faced difficulty determining the revenue generated by the Please Call Me in court papers filed at the Constitutional Court this week. 

Makate's papers included a supporting affidavit by former employee Andrew Hendricks, who said that company was indeed able to determine the revenue generated by the service and that Vodacom has financial records that determine the revenue generated.

READ: Vodacom, Please Call Me creator in legal deadlock

Vodacom hit back at the assertion and told Fin24 that it took issue with Hendricks's unsubstantiated claim that Vodacom has mechanisms to determine the revenue generated by Please Call Me. 

“The true position, as stated in our responding affidavit to the Constitutional Court dated 24 January 2017, is that the PCM (Please Call Me) product was never treated in our income statement as revenue generative,” said Kennedy.

“Moreover, it is not practically possible to distinguish which calls were induced through a PCM (Please Call Me) message from those not so induced,” he added.

Vodacom believes that the Constitutional Court order, directing the parties to negotiate in good faith to determine reasonable compensation, is clear and unambiguous. 

READ: Please Call Me inventor heads back to ConCourt

“Under the guise of seeking clarification on the order, Mr Makate is in effect asking the Constitutional Court to issue a new order in the form of a share of revenue as the sole methodology for determining reasonable compensation,” Vodacom said. 

“Vodacom remains committed to negotiations with Mr Makate and is prepared to resume talks at his earliest convenience. Mr Makate's present application is, in Vodacom's view, premature,” the company added.

Vodacom said that the process set out in the Constitutional Court order, including the intervention of the Vodacom Group CEO in the event of a deadlock, must be exhausted by the parties before the courts can be approached for any relief. 

In December, negotiations between Makate and Vodacom hit a brick-wall with the matter going back to court.

Makate applied for an order at the Constitutional Court seeking clarification on the import and meaning of a judgment handed down last year.

It was previously reported that Vodacom was considering compensation methodologies in which the company mulled whether it should take the form of profit or share of revenue.

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