Ramadan Rumours

Day-times during Ramadan are generally lunch-free with faithfuls fasting. But this does not keeps from interesting rumours from being crafted and moving around.

One such news rumour is that GSM giant Mobilink is/will/might acquire dominant stakes in Cybernet – one of the leading local Internet service providers. While insiders are generally confirming the rumour various details are being provided depending on whom you are talking to.

Cybernet has been a chief provider of Internet services to Mobilink. The dramatic exit of three or four top seat employees of Cybernet last month has created quite a stir in the local market. From employees to customers, there had been wide ranging speculations as well as a general anticipation of more-upsets-to-come. At that time, the sudden changes were attributed to some rift between the higher employed-management and the group financiers.

<rumour-dissection>Mobilink (read Orascom) is certainly focused on diversifying its portfolio. Not only did they create multiple companies to support the core voice operations of Mobilink, the diversification has gone into real-estate purchases, cement industries and even GSM Terminal Support services such as the one offered under brand name of Ring. A deal to acquire top-placed Internet service provider is quite in-line with their strategy. The Intel Capital’s fund aimed towards spreading of the Wimax adoption worldwide (and reportedly sized around $100 million) has gone into various Telecom holding companies including Orascom. Mobilink is one of the darlings of Orascom as compared to its other regional ventures and that significant portion of this fund will go into Mobilink is quite likely. Once Mobilink has a Wimax offering, it will definetly need a platform (license, brand, users, channel sales network etc) to toy with its beyond-the-voice ideas. There couldn’t have been a better choice than Cybernet.</rumour-dissection>

One of the interesting twist that is being associated with the current Ramadan rumour is that the very team that was quit Cybernet in a hurry is coming back now sporting Mobilink’s badges to run the company. Well, if this is true, this is what we can call Dramas in Life!

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7 Responses to “Ramadan Rumours”

  1. Atif Says:

    Quite interesting and revealing.

  2. AD Says:

    — Cyber nama —
    (adding more spice to the drama)

    Cybernet itself has been a real-life drama ever since its inception. Setup and led by a simple IT officer of Lakson Tobacco, the company became large enough to hold a monopoly in the early days of internet in Pakistan.
    A survey of ISPs always show Cybernet’s users being the highest, insiders in the finance section reported the company in “Loss” in early years of 2000. While some outside finance & taxation gurus hint it as a trick to save millions of taxes (by showing as being in loss), insiders blame it on the marketing heads spending millions on marketing campaigns. These campaigns turn out to be somewhat successful but the company’s pockets do not get filled as expected. Where did it go – ofcourse in some pockets !
    One such incident is very famous when the previous Mktg GM launched a country-wide musical concert starring the famous Junoon. Junoon is known for its conert sell-offs with house-full benefiting the organisers/sponsors, the company instead literally posted millions in losses. This event ended in another drama – the Mktg GM’s contract not being continued resulting in him shown the way out !
    Though multi-million industrial groups always try portfolio diversification, the Lakani founded this company for his son, a post-graduate techie from Stanford, as his future venture.
    Rumours are strong that Cyber’s 51% shares will be bought by Mobilink, the point is either the kid is fed up of the toy or the dad can’t bear it’s expenses anymore. Otherwise Cybernet is not another IT-nerds’ loan-driven venture, infact a sister concern of a very giant group – LAKSON !

  3. AD Says:

    TM,

    i suggest this blog be named as “Cyber nama” or “Cyber Rumours” instead of Ramadan rumours due to so much being said abt the co. ! πŸ™‚

  4. AD Says:

    – Cyber Nama –
    (part 2)

    Further to the previous episode, i recently got some “inside” news abt Cybernet…
    all of us know by now abt the Mobilink takeover and that Cyber’s CEO/COO has left his baby company…why…well now that’s interesting. Let’s 1st have some history.
    As mentioned in the previous episode, this company was formed by Lakhani daddy for his son. Now, all this time during Cyber’s growth, this son was in US studying (he’s a Stanford graduate). He returned back to PK around 2004 n started taking interest in his new toy. He himself was a modern-age techno-preneur kinda guy instead of the usual “seth” kind. He didn’t divulge much into Cyber’s ops n instead started introducing new solutions technically & economically, just like any foreign-returned. The latest edition of his ideas came out a while ago as “CyberEXtreme”, broadband consumer DSL for home users. Now, this is where the water starts boiling.
    Cyber’s CEO/COO initially disagreed with this idea (wont-be-successful crap) n a rift built up b/w the two which resulted in a status-quo situation.
    Meanwhile, Cyber’s upper mgmt’s “loot-maar” thing started becoming more than evident. It is believed that Mr. CEO, along with his accomplices, have made alot of money in the backyard of the Isp’s ops. I’m talking abt millions here. Abt 2 yrs ago, a new CFO had joined Cyber to take over its messed-up finance dept. This was thought to bring some new life to the financial ops of the co. Yes it did bring new life, but only to the pockets of the chiefs. Corruption had a new corporate leadership & strategy. As said, this was now more than evident.
    So, Mr. CEO decided to leave (or was asked to leave) this golden garden. But not alone. The trio, Mr. CEO, Mr. GM-Corporate, Mr. CFO, left the garden together.
    Cyber is currently in a state of despair, thanks to the three musketeers.
    Anyways, Cyber’s buyout by Mobilink is confirmed. As mentioned by TM, if the same old upper mgmnt will come back under Mobilink’s badge, then God save Cyber !

  5. NeO Says:

    Bullshit!!… besides all odes, u’ve got to check out the progress in last 10 yrs… it requires a lot of dedication and hard work on the management’s part.. which ofcourse is so-called mgmt’s initiative.. one’s gotta be appreciative of that.. think!

  6. Shakeel Says:

    Rumor is gone true πŸ™‚ LinkNET team is in office now a days to finish up this task…

  7. OJ Says:

    I don’t think this rumour holds true nemore since LinkNet has acquired DANCOM which gives them the much needed WIMAX base. Say what?


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