Bashir: The Quiet Billionaire Behind Mafab Communications that Defeated Airtel, Glo, 9Mobile to 5G License

Bashir: The Quiet Billionaire Behind Mafab Communications that Defeated Airtel, Glo, 9Mobile to 5G License

  • Before today, not many Nigerians have heard of Mafab communications, a company founded on the 8th of July, 2020
  • The company is licensed by the Nigerian Telecommunications commission to provide and operate Local Interconnect and International carrier services
  • On Monday, 13 December, Mafab communications and MTN Nigeria was named the two winners of the 5G license

If you mention the name Mafab Communications to a close friend, or even if you try harder and say Dr. Musbahu Mohammad Bashir, the response will almost certainly be, "Who is that?"

However, after the Nigerian Communications Commission announced Mafab Communications as one of the winners alongside MTN Nigeria for the deployment of 5G in Nigeria on Monday, December 13, 2021, in Abuja, Bashir is one of the most searched names on the internet.

The two companies will pay a total of $273.6 million (N134 billion) by February 24, 2022.

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Bashir: The quiet billionaire behind Mafab communications that defeated Airtel, Glo, 9Mobile to 5G license
A telecommunication Mast Credit: NCC
Source: UGC

The news comes exactly 16 months after Mafab communications was registered as a subsidiary of Althani Group of companies, a private equity firm.

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Corporate Affairs Commission records show Mafab communications is to provide an international gateway for interconnection of voice, video, and data service termination between and also provides a platform for worldwide interconnectivity.

Bashir is the chairman of Althani Group of companies with portfolios in more than 8 sectors.

The chairman also sits as a board member of Jaiz Bank, and a director in companies such as Bento Drill Nigeria Limited 1995, Offshore Technologies International Limited 1995, and Resource Capital Group 1995.

He is also the Chairman of Cobalt International Services Limited, a pre-shipment Inspection Agent for dry goods and bulk liquid cargoes.

How did Mafab Communications, a newbie, defeat Glo, Airtel others?

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Meet First Bank New Chairman, Ahmad Abdullahi, a Respected Economist, Expert in Bank Crises Resolution had earlier reported that Mafab Communications Limited was selected ahead of Glo and other popular network providers to battle out for 2 slots.

Mafab was faced with threats from Airtel Networks Limited and MTN Communications Nigeria Limited.

Surprisingly, Globacom (Glo) and 9Mobile did not meet the requirement to compete in the last stage according to the NCC.

It took eight hours and 11 rounds of bidding for MTN and Mafab communications to win as Airtel dropped out in the 10th round.

Funke Opeke: The 'Crazy' Smart Nigerian Woman had earlier reported on how one of the most talked-about names this week in Nigeria's technology space is Funke Opeke, an engineer and Techpreneur.

Opeke is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of MainOne, one of Africa's most important and pivotal tech companies in the past decade.

On Tuesday, December 7, 2021, she announced her 12-year-old company will be taken over by a US company for N134.70bn but it wasn't a smooth ride.


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