Safaricom Telecommunications Ethiopia granted operator license

ETHIOPIA – The Ethiopian Communications Authority (ECA) has announced that Safaricom Telecommunications Ethiopia PLC has been issued with a final licence even as reports surface that over half of the winning consortium’s financing could be in doubt due to US sanctions. The ECA awarded the final licence “following the incorporation of the local company and business registration by the Global Partnership for Ethiopia” (GPE Consortium). The Safaricom-led consortium received a designated licence in May 2021 after winning the bid and was given 45 days to register a local company. “The…

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Global Partnership for Ethiopia taps Vodacom DRC chief Anwar Soussa as Managing Director

ETHIOPIA – The Global Partnership for Ethiopia (GPE) has appointed Anwar Soussa as the Managing Director of the Operating Company in Ethiopia, effective July 1, 2021. He will report to the Board of the Ethiopia entity and Safaricom PLC Chief Executive Officer. Anwar is currently the Managing Director of Vodacom Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and the Chairperson of Vodacash (M-PESA), a position he has held since 2017. He has cemented Vodacom DRC as the largest Vodacom operation outside of South Africa by driving major strides in operational performance, crossing…

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Safaricom unveils M-Pesa Super App as it ‘redefines the future of money’

KENYA – Telecommunications service provider Safaricom, has launched the M-Pesa Super App with Mini Apps to usher in a new way to experience money. The virtual launch took place on June 23, 2021, via YouTube on the Safaricom official channel. The Mini Apps enable customers and Lipa Na M-Pesa Businesses to Shop, Interact with Suppliers and accomplish hundreds of tasks within the M-Pesa Super App.  The occasion was graced by Safaricom CEO Peter Ndegwa and M-Pesa Africa Chief Executive Officer Sitoyo Lopokoiyit. In March 2007, Safaricom launched M-Pesa, an innovative payment service…

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Safaricom consortium gets license by communication authority to enter Ethiopia

ETHIOPIA – The Ethiopian government has granted the Ethiopian Communication Authority permission to grant a license to Global Partnership for Ethiopia, a consortium led by Safaricom and consisting of Vodafone, Vodacom, Safaricom, and Sumitomo Corporation. The consortium will pay US$850 million for the license and will spend US$8.5 billion. MTN, the other competitor, bid US$600 million but did not receive the license. Making up the winning consortium is Vodafone, a British multinational telecommunications firm which has partnered with Vodacom, Safaricom, CDC Group, and Sumitomo Corporation. “We will soon open a…

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Safaricom gets 56% stake in Global Partnership for Ethiopia consortium

ETHIOPIA – Mobile network operator Safaricom,  has raised its controlling stake in Global Partnership for Ethiopia, the consortium that has made a bid for one of two telecoms licences in Kenya’s northern neighbour, to 56 percent from the 51 percent. The details of the consortium’s latest ownership structure were disclosed by South Africa-based Vodacom Group which owns a 34.9 percent stake in the Nairobi Securities Exchange-listed telco. “The consortium is 56 percent owned by Safaricom, 6 percent by Vodacom, 25 percent by Sumitomo the Japanese conglomerate and 10 percent by CDC, the…

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Safaricom names Sitoyo Lopokoiyit as M-Pesa Africa managing director

KENYA – Telecommunications company Safaricom has appointed Sitoyo Lopokoiyit as the M-Pesa Africa managing director effective April 1, 2021. Lopokoiyit has been the Chief Financial Services Officer of Safaricom for the last three years. In an announcement, Safaricom Chief Executive Officer Peter Ndegwa said Safaricom will initiate the relevant talent sourcing processes to identify and appoint the next Financial Services leaders in due course but meanwhile, he will continue discharging the functions of the chief financial services office. Lopokoiyit joined Safaricom PLC from 1st April 2018, having previously served as…

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Safaricom switches on 5G technology across Kenya

KENYA – Leading telecommunication company Safaricom has announced the launch of trials for the trail-blazing 5G technology for its customers which will begin with both individual and enterprise customers in Nairobi, Kisumu, Kisii and Kakamega towns in Kenya. As part of its trial, the company plans to expand the number of such 5G sites to more than 150 across nine towns over the next 12 months. The primary objective during the trial period will be to establish if customers can enjoy speeds of up to 700 Megabits per second, with…

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PE firm TPG buys stake in Airtel’s mobile money unit for US$191m

AFRICA – Airtel Africa is set to sell an undisclosed minority stake in its Pan-African mobile money business to private equity firm TPG for US$191 million, underlining the huge value of mobile financial service platforms in Africa. The multinational telco announced the transaction through the London Stock Exchange where it is listed. The record-breaking deal values Airtel Money, available in Share sale to private equity comes amid struggle to cut M-Pesa dominance in the Kenyan market and 14 African countries including Kenya, Malawi, and Uganda, at US$2.65 billion. TPG is investing…

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Ethiopian Communicatons Authority shortlists six firms for telco licence

ETHIOPIA – The Ethiopian Communications Authority has shortlisted a consortia of 12 companies that had expressed interest in entering the country’s telecommunications market, one of them being Kenya’s telecom giant Safaricom. The firms will be required to submit their technical and financial bids by April 5, compared with a previous deadline of March 5. The Ethiopian Communications Authority announced that it had received expressions of interest from scores of firms, including telcos and non-telecom operators by June 22 which included the Safaricom consortium, Etisalat, Axian, MTN, Orange, Saudi Telecom Company,…

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Nairobi Securities Exchange switches its trading infrastructure to Safaricom

KENYA – Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) has shifted from the South Africa’s MTN trading platform to a new one powered by mobile telecommunication giant Safaricom. Safaricom’s bet on trading infrastructure for the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) has now opened a new business frontier which analysts reckon could create more opportunities in the region. The successful transitioning to a new state -of-the-art broker connectivity solution powered by Safaricom as the technology partner will provide higher trading platform availability, ensure higher uptime and performance and increase network security,” the bourse said in…

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