" ITREALMS: VGCCL goes for unified license

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

VGCCL goes for unified license

Remmy Nweke

ACCLAIMED leader in wireline telephony in the country, VGC Communications Limited (VGCCL), has formally submitted application for the unified license to the regulator, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).

The regulator, had on Saturday, May 13, this year, announced the award of the first batch of Unified Licenses to Starcomms Limited, Multi-Links Telecommunications Limited, Prest Cable & Satellite TV Systems Limited and Intercellular Nigeria Plc.

Close sources at both the telco and NCC, informed that a meeting was held between the regulator, NCC and representatives from VGC, led by its General Manager, Mr. Gbenga Adebayo.

But confirming this in a response to our inquiry, Mr. Adebayo stated in a Short Messaging Service (SMS), “Yes, we have applied.”

As stipulated by NCC, any interested telco in the Unified Licensing Regime (ULR) must have up to 10,000 subscribers, with evidence of financial ability to deliver its services nationwide and on any model it may wish.

Potential telco, according to NCC, must have an existing and operating network infrastructure justifiable evidence of financial capability for substantial network rollout, must be up-to-date on submission of annual audited accounts, payment of company tax, and equipment type approval as well as be up-to-date in settlement of interconnection obligations.

ULR license when granted behooves benefiting firm’s to provide services on a non-exclusive basis in the designated license area and other operators even as prospective operators could also be granted license in the same license area.

Provision of services under the new regime will be subject to the geographical limitations contained in the existing license. However, expansion to other regions could be allowed subject to availability of spectrum.

While Unified Licensing is expected to enhance competition in the various segments of the telecoms market, prices of services are bound to come down.

VGC, a Limited Liability Company with the main objective of carrying on the business of providing communication and information technology related services is currently savouring its license permits to provide cabling and radio telephone services nationwide.

The telco also integrate voice and data technology into its network system by creating and supporting the basic conditions required for speech and data communications. VGC is also NCC licensed Internet Service Provider (ISP).

Currently, VGC has services dominantly at the Victoria Garden City (VGC) axis among other parts of Lagos, Abuja and Port Harcourt.

Its capability is evident on rare complaint on its offerings at the monthly NCC organised Telecom Consumers Parliament, which has stood the company out as an upward looking operator.

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