Home » Africa: Consortium of telecom companies led by Kenya’s Safaricom bags Ethiopian operating license

Africa: Consortium of telecom companies led by Kenya’s Safaricom bags Ethiopian operating license

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Safaricom

A consortium led by Kenya’s Safaricom and Japan’s Sumitomo, have been awarded one operating license Ethiopia’s telecommunications regulator, Ethiopia Communications Authority. Brook Taye, a senior adviser at the finance ministry, disclosed the information on Saturday, May 22, 2021.

According to a report on Arabnews.com, the consortium, which includes Vodacom, Vodafone, and British development finance agency CDC Group, paid $850 million for the license, Brook said. South Africa’s MTN had also bid for a license.

READ: Tourism: Safaricom launches 5G network as Kenya becomes first East African country to roll out technology

Africa’s second-most populous country is hoping that the opening of one of the world’s last major closed telecoms markets will create millions of online job opportunities.

As as as the license fee, the consortium plans to invest up to $8.5 billion in infrastructure among other areas, Brook said, adding that it was expected to create between 1 and 1.5 million jobs.

READ: Africa: Safaricom, Vodacom finally acquires M-Pesa from Vodafone

The operator will begin with 4G services, Brook said. “We will soon open a bid for the remaining license,” said Balcha Reba, director general of the Ethiopian Communications Authority.
Balcha said MTN’s offer of $600 million was deemed too low.

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