Company News

14 March 2018 | Business

Guptas lose bid to keep bank Baroda in SA

JOHANNESBURG - A group of almost 20 South African companies linked to the Gupta family have lost a court bid which sought to have India’s Bank of Baroda, the last lender doing business with the firms, maintain operations in the country, court documents showed on Monday.

Baroda’s South African division was thrust into the spotlight two years ago when it agreed to take on the Guptas after South Africa’s major banks turned their back on the family’s businesses.

Baroda said a month ago that it had pulled the plug on its South African business, citing a strategic decision to slim down in international markets.

-Nampa/Reuters

MTN, Vodacom charging 2 639% more for out-of-bundle data

JOHANNESBURG- Amid reports of South Africa’s top two networks charging up to 2 639% more for out-of-bundle data, Vodacom has said it is normal business practice to offer discounts to customers that make longer term commitments.

Despite a push by government and the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa), out-of-bundle data rates are much more expensive than in-bundle.

MyBroadband recently revealed that data rates on both the Vodacom and MTN networks were reported to be exponentially higher when users ran out of data bundles.

It was reported that while on contract, a Vodacom 20GB data bundle cost R329, which worked out to R0.02 per MB, but out-of-bundle the rate per MB was R0.44, 2 630% higher than an in-bundle rate.

-Fin24

Telkom Kenya to challenge Safaricom's dominance

NAIROBI - Telkom Kenya relaunched a mobile financial services platform on Monday that it hopes can challenge Safaricom’s dominance of Kenya’s lucrative mobile money market.

It said it has spent 1 billion Kenyan shillings (US$9.9 million) redesigning and rebranding the platform, T-kash, which enables customers to transfer money and pay bills via mobile phone. The company shut down its original mobile money platform, which drew a limited number of subscribers, last June.

It has now signed up 20 000 new mobile money agents to provide the service, which it hopes will help accelerate its subscriber growth, Telkom chief executive officer Aldo Mareuse told reporters in Nairobi.

-Nampa/Reuters

Foschini CEO to retire

JOHANNESBURG - The Foschini Group (TFG) said on Monday that CEO Doug Murray would retire on September 3, and be replaced by the firm’s chief financial officer Anthony Thunström. Murray, who took the helm in 2007, will become a non-executive director after his retirement, a TFG statement said.

“Over the past 11 years, Doug has continuously delivered returns to shareholders and responsibly grown TFG to what it is today. He has a people-orientated, results-driven approach which has made him an invaluable leader,” said chairman Michael Lewis.

-Nampa/Reuters

Sonatrach to invest US$250m in gas field

TINHERT- Algerian state energy firm Sonatrach will invest US$250 million to boost output at the Tinhert gas field to 20 million cubic metres (mcm) per day by 2020 up from 5 million cubic metres, its CEO said on Monday. “This is an important project that will push our gas output up,” Sonatrach’s CEO Abdelmoumen Ould Kaddour told reporters on the site located in Algeria’s southeast not far from Libya’s borders.

Algeria’s total gas output is around 100 billion cubic metres per year, of which 55 billion are exported.

-Nampa/Reuters

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