DOUBLE JEOPARDY | Etisalat Nigeria faces ‘Internet shutdown’ by Abu Dhabi on July 31

DOUBLE JEOPARDY | Etisalat Nigeria faces ‘Internet shutdown’ by Abu Dhabi on July 31

DOUBLE JEOPARDY | Etisalat Nigeria faces ‘Internet shutdown’ by Abu Dhabi on July 31

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Etisalat Nigeria risks shutdown of its Internet presence by Arab shareholders pulling out of the phone company by Monday July 31, this year.

Technology Times checks reveal that unless the Nigerian owners and the Arabs reach a deal on the continued use of the Etisalat brand identity, the Internet domain name of the number four mobile phone company in Nigeria, www.etisalat.com.ng, may be taken down by month end.

Publicly-available online records have shown that the Etisalat Nigeria Internet domain name which is registered with Lagos-based domain registrant, Ice Cool Contracts, is managed and hosted by Emirates Telecommunications Corporation (Etisalat) headquartered in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

The UAE telecoms company was quoted by Reuters as confirming that it had pulled out of the Nigerian mobile phone company, terminated its contracts and given the local shareholders three weeks to “phase out the brand.”

Technology Times checks further reveal that Etisalat Nigeria now faces another battle to save the domain name, www.etisalat.com.ng which is also home to the official presence of the mobile phone company on the Internet.

The records (seen in box below) also shows that apart from the domain name and hosting being held by Abu Dhabi’s Etisalat, the situation is further complicated by the Monday July 31, 2017 expiry date of the online brand property of the Nigerian phone company.

Technology Times checks further reveal that Etisalat Nigeria now faces another battle to save the domain name, www.etisalat.com.ng which is also home to the official presence of the mobile phone company on the Internet.

Publicly-available online records above have shown that the Etisalat Nigeria Internet domain name, etisalat.com.ng, which is registered with Lagos-based domain registrant, Ice Cool Contracts, is managed and hosted by Emirates Telecommunications Corporation (Etisalat) headquartered in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.
Publicly-available online records above have shown that the Etisalat Nigeria Internet domain name, etisalat.com.ng, which is registered with Lagos-based domain registrant, Ice Cool Contracts, is managed and hosted by Emirates Telecommunications Corporation (Etisalat) headquartered in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

The situation places Etisalat Nigeria in a difficult phase amid risks from the outgoing Arab shareholders that control the brand identity and hosting of the online platform where the phone company delivers most of its services.

On one hand, Emerging Markets Telecommunication Services Ltd., the local shareholders are battling to save the mobile phone business that are taking control of Etisalat Nigeria over alleged defaults on a $1.2 billion loan owed them.

Etisalat Nigeria officials could not be reached to comment officially on the matter at the time of publication.

But EMTS had Monday confirmed that it was in talks with Etisalat of UAE on the continued use of the brand.

Ibrahim Dikko, Director, Government and Regulatory Affairs at Etisalat Nigeria
Image credit: www.mobileworldmag.com

Ibrahim Dikko, Vice President (Regulatory and Corporate Affairs) at Etisalat Nigeria said in a statement made available to Technology Times that the company “is aware of recent news reports regarding Etisalat Group’s withdrawal of the right to the continued use of the Etisalat brand in Nigeria by EMTS.”

According to him, “EMTS has a valid and subsisting agreement with the Etisalat Group, which entitles EMTS to use the Etisalat brand, notwithstanding the recent changes within the Company. Indeed, discussions are ongoing between EMTS and Etisalat Group pertaining to the continued use of the brand, and EMTS will issue a formal statement once discussions are concluded. The final outcome on the use of the brand in no way affects the operations of the business as our full range of services remain available to our customers.

“EMTS launched in Nigeria in 2008 with “0809ja” to affirm the “Nigerianness” of our origin and sphere of influence. In our 9 years of operation, we have remained a prime driver and avid supporter of the Nigerian spirit of excellence, and we will continue to stay true to our “Naijacentric identity”. This notion is strongly reflected in our core messages and depicted in major projects and initiatives which we have been known to support. All these initiatives have their foundation embedded in supporting key aspects of the Nigerian fabric: building Nigerian businesses and empowering Nigerian’s with a focus on the youth”, Dikko said.

According to him, “Nigeria remains the soul of EMTS’ business and we have made the brand alluring to our teeming subscribers who see a piece of the spirit and character of Nigeria in everything we do. EMTS is here to stay and we wish to assure our esteemed customers that our core values of youthfulness, customer-centricity and innovation will remain the pillars on which we operate. We thank our esteemed customers for their abiding faith in us.”

 

Kolade Akinola Technology Journalist at Technology Times Mobile: + 234 (0) 807 401 6027

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