Safaricom to buy yuMobile

 

 

By Metro Reporter
Safaricom expects its joint acquisition of yuMobile to be completed within months at a cost of Sh10.5 billion.


Safaricom Chief Executive Officer Bob Collymore told Bloomberg at the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit in Washington that the company expects to submit the transaction for approval to the Competition Authority of Kenya soon.
In March this year Safaricom said it would to take over yuMobile’s network base stations and transmission equipment after announcing plans of buying yuMobile, Kenya’s third-biggest network operator that’s owned by Essar Telecom Kenya Ltd.
The planned acquisition comes months after Safaricom failed to meet the Communication Authority of Kenya’s quality-of-service criteria in 2012-13, achieving a compliance level of 50 percent compared with the minimum of 80 percent, which the company had to attain to obtain a new license that it has since received.
Speaking during an interview at the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit in Washington, Safaricom Chief Executive Officer Bob Collymore said that Safaricom is hopeful of closing the deal in a couple of months.
Under the deal, Safaricom is expected to take over yuMobile’s network base stations and transmission equipment while Airtel Kenya takes over yuMobile’s 2.75 million subscribers.
This would boost Airtel Kenya’s market share to 26.4 percent from the current 17.6 percent.
Safaricom would still be the market leader with a market share of 67 percent.
Orange has said it may cut its shareholdings in Kenya, where it owns 70 percent of Telkom Kenya, the country’s smallest operator.
Viettel Corp of Vietnam is among the bidders for the stake.
He said: “The Vietnamese are fiercely competitive and very low cost.
When we look at what they did in Mozambique, they changed the game. We’re all going to have to knuckle down and deal with that.”

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