2degrees has confirmed that the man widely credited with creating the company, Tex Edwards, has issued proceedings against the mobile operator with the Employment Relations Authority.
2degrees spokesman Mathew Bolland would not comment on the nature of Edwards' grievance or on a report that Edwards intended to file a High Court action because of concerns over how minority shareholdings in 2degrees had been diluted as it raised money to invest in its mobile network.
Those minority shareholdings include his own and that of the Hautaki Maori trust.
In November Te Huarahi Tika Trust revealed its commercial arm, Hautaki Trust, borrowed $2.6 million from 2degrees’s majority shareholder Trilogy International to maintain its stake in New Zealand’s third mobile operator.
The Trust's accounts show a debt of $2,630,385 to Trilogy International New Zealand LLC as a result of a loan agreement “to enable the Trust to subscribe for shares in Two Degrees Mobile Limited as they are offered to maintain its shareholding in the company.”
2degrees originally spawned from Northelia, a company set up by African telecommunications firm Econet in 2000, represented by Edwards, but has been majority owned by United States investment company Trilogy International since 2009.