Huge Group acquires Tethys Mobile – including Virgin Mobile SA tech and IP

JSE-listed investment and holding company Huge Group will acquire Tethys Mobile – previously known as Virgin Mobile South Africa.

The Huge board announced that it has concluded a series of transactions with the shareholders and creditors of Tethys, which will result in Tethys becoming a wholly-owned subsidiary company of a foreign company controlled by Huge Group.

Huge Group intends to change the name of Tethys to Huge Digital Enablement Proprietary Limited as soon as the transactions are implemented, and the company successfully exits the business rescue process.

Tethys was South Africa and Africa’s first MVNO when it launched in 2006. The business was previously Virgin Mobile South Africa Proprietary Limited, which entered business rescue in September 2020.

The transactions are subject to various conditions, the most notable being the finalisation of Huge Group’s due diligence.

“Huge Group’s rationale for acquiring Tethys is the indirect acquisition of its software and technology platform and the intellectual property related to this software and technology platform,” it said.

“The intention is to leverage the world-class technology built into this software and technology platform and the operational capabilities that exist in support of it.”

Huge said that over the past 16 years, Tethys has created a very sophisticated technical and operational capability linked to this software and technology that will allow the company to provide a Platform-as-a-Service or PaaS to organisations who aspire to provide mobile virtual network operator or MVNO services.

“The software and technology platform includes a multi-tenant capable CRM, Billing and Online Charging System that provides enhanced billing, customer and subscriber management, product, tariff, and real-time rating capabilities,” it said.

The transactions, when implemented, will also see the post-commencement creditors who supported Tethys during the business rescue process settled in full; this includes Tethys subscribers who were due refunds after its access to network services was terminated in September 2021.

As part of the transactions, Huge Group will acquire Cell C’s claims against Tethys as well as the claims of various pre-commencement creditors.

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Huge Group acquires Tethys Mobile – including Virgin Mobile SA tech and IP