Kenyan mobile network operator Safaricom is in talks with Ethio Telecom to share towers in Ethiopia, we learned on Monday February 28 from sources familiar with the matter.
Kenya’s largest telecommunications provider is currently working closely with Ethiopia’s state-owned telecommunications operator and the Ethiopian Communications Authority (ECA) to fine-tune the details of the partnership. The Safaricom-led consortium is expected to invest $8 billion in critical infrastructure and services in Ethiopia by 2032. During that time, the company may be forced to use cell sites, cell towers and other active elements of its competitor, such as network roaming, during installation.
“As we are going to invest in Ethiopia in the coming years, we are obliged to work with Ethio Telecom which will help us in our digital transformation agenda in Ethiopia”, indicated Anwar Soussa, general manager of Safaricom-Ethiopia, adding that: “his company is currently negotiating on national roaming and infrastructure sharing in accordance with the proclamation and the telecommunications regulatory framework overseen by the ECA”.
Note that Safaricom has set up its own infrastructure and unveiled its first data center assembled in China in Addis Ababa.
Built for $100 million, the facility was rolled out less than a year after the consortium led by Safaricom, South Africa’s Vodacom and Japan’s Sumitomo was granted a mobile operating license.