Safaricom to battle 11 operators for Ethiopia’s telco license

Telco operator Safaricom is expected to battle 11 other operators for two telecommunications licenses on offer in Ethiopia as it seeks to breach the market.

The Ethiopian Communications Authority (ECA) disclosed Friday that it had received 12 expressions on interest (EOI) for the issuance of two new full-service telecommunications licenses.

Safaricom has made its application for the licenses through a consortium that includes parent companies Vodafone and Vodacom.

Other telcos in the line for the two licenses include Etisalat, Axian, MTN, Orange, Saudi Telecom Company, Telkom (South Africa), Liquid Telecom and Snail Mobile.

The remainder of applicants are non-telecom operators Kandu Global and Electromecha International.

Safaricom is pegging its long awaited entry into Ethiopia on two fronts with the one other channel being the purchase of a stake in State owned Ethio Telecom which is to be privatised.

Ethiopia attraction to foreign firms such as Safaricom has been pegged on the country’s huge population of 100 million.

At present, Ethio Telecom is the sole operator in the country.

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