Ex-staff claim Vodacom knew it owed 'Please Call Me' inventor billions

Ex-staff claim Vodacom knew it owed 'Please Call Me' inventor billions

- Vodacom had allegedly deliberately underpaid 'Please Call Me' inventor Nkosana Makate when their legal battle was settled

- The cellular provider allegedly knew it owed Makate billions but offered him just a fraction

- This comes as a senior former employee claims it is impossible for Vodacom to not have any clue as to how much revenue the idea had generated

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The battle between 'Please Call Me' inventor Nkosana Makate and Vodacom continues with allegations that the cellular giant knew better now surfacing.

It has now emerged that Vodacom had concluded that it owed Makate a staggering R63.4 billion for his invention but had only offered him R47 million.

Court papers filed in the Gauteng High Court revealed that two former employees have sworn under oath that the company knew it was underpaying.

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Vodacom had determined it owed Makate billions, but offered a fraction of this amount as compensation instead. Image: Twitter/ @makate_Nkosana
Source: UGC

SowetanLIVE reports that the employees confirmed that the company knew how much revenue was generated by the product from as far back as 2015.

A former senior accountant at Vodacom is one of these employees and is adamant that the group is lying when it claims not to have the data to determine how much revenue was brought in by Makate's idea.

IOL reports that Teboho Motaung had worked his way up the ladder during his 23 years at the cellular network. Motaung signalled his dismay over senior officials who claim that the company has no clue how much it had earned off of Makate's hard work:

“What disturbed me, particularly, was the fact that I had read in relation to affidavits made by senior officials at Vodacom as far as back as 2010 allegations that Vodacom kept no records which would allow it to calculate the number of return calls triggered by Please Call Me SMSes and hence could not calculate the revenue earned from Please Call Me."

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Earlier, Briefly.co.za reported that 'Please Call Me' inventor Nkosana Makate had emerged victorious after another round in court against Vodacom.

The Pretoria High Court has given the network provider 21 days to furnish Makate with copies of financial records and contracts it had with other service providers. Makate wished to see what deals were in place for services including airtime advances, bulk messaging, Look4ME and more.

Judge Jody Kollapen had ruled that Makate should indeed by handed over the documentation for 2008, but that the info would be subjected to a 'confidentiality regime' which prevented the inventor from passing it on to a third party.

Makate had approached the courts in a bid to force CEO Shameel Joosub into disclosing financial records. This case also saw Joosub prompted to present all documentation he had relied on when offering Makate R47 million compensation.

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Makate had rejected the offer, insisting that Vodacom owes him R20 billion for his invention, a 5% stake of the R205 billion estimated revenue which he believes his service generated over an 18-year period.

The court ordered Vodacom to enter into negotiations with Makate in order to determine a reasonable payout to compensate him. Originally, Makate had sought 15% of the proceeds made from his service.

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Source: Briefly.co.za

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