Airtel Africa completes 10 years of operations

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on June 09, 2020

A Bharti Airtel advertisement board   -  REUTERS

Airtel Africa, a provider of telecommunications and mobile money services in 14 countries across sub-Saharan Africa, will complete 10 years of operations this month.

Bharti Airtel set up its presence in Africa with the acquisition of Zain Telecom’s Africa operations in June 2010. The company has reached more than 110 million customers, bridging the digital divide and increasing financial inclusion, it said in a statement.

The company was recently listed on London and Nigerian stock exchanges.

“In these challenging times, the Airtel Africa team along with our partners are working hard to provide our customers with reliable voice, data and mobile money services,” Raghunath Mandava, CEO, Airtel Africa, said.

Airtel Africa employs more than 3,300 people across the continent, with another 1.6 million people earning through working with Airtel Africa as entrepreneurs and in its distribution network. Airtel Africa’s voice, data and mobile money services are driving growth and transforming customers’ lives.

Airtel Africa provides voice services to 110.6 million customers, data services to 35.4 million customers and mobile money services to 18.3 million customers. The company had a turnover of $3.4 billion in the last financial year.

Over the past decade, Airtel Africa has expanded its network footprint enabling millions of people to access telecoms services and taken the lead in the rollout of 4G networks, helping to drive digitalisation. The introduction of wireless home broadband has further helped service customers’ evolving needs.

Airtel Africa’s mobile money services provide customers with exclusive assured float and a growing number of strategic partnerships enable cross-border money transfers. Airtel Africa has also launched a virtual card, further boosting financial inclusion.

A timeline

2010: Bharti Airtel acquired African operations of the Zain Group (formerly Mobile Telecommunications Group) comprising 36 million subscribers operating in 15 countries, including 12 of the Group’s current 14-country footprint.

The Group further expanded its footprint with the acquisition of Telecom Seychelles Ltd.

2012: The Group launched greenfield operations in Rwanda.

2013: The group expanded its operations in Uganda and Congo through the acquisition of Warid Telecom Uganda and Warid Congo SA from the Warid Group.

2015: The Group acquired yuMobile’s subscriber base in Kenya from Essar Telecommunications Kenya, a part of the Essar Group.

2016: The Group completed the sale of its operations in Burkina Faso and Sierra Leone to France-based Orange, to better streamline the Group’s footprint in East Africa.

2017: The Group deconsolidated its operations in Ghana upon entering into a joint venture with Millicom International Cellular (which operates under the Tigo brand in Ghana) whereby Airtel and Millicom share equal ownership and governance rights in a combined AirtelTigo entity.

2018: The Group acquired the operations of Tigo Rwanda, a subsidiary of Millicom.

Airtel Africa Ltd, the Group’s UK holding company, was incorporated and registered as a private company in England and Wales.

The Company completed an initial round of pre-IPO funding, raising $1.25 billion.

2019: Telkom Kenya Ltd, the third-largest MNO in Kenya, announced its intention to transfer its mobile operations, enterprise, and carrier business to Airtel Kenya, the Group’s operating subsidiary in Kenya.

Airtel Africa listed on the London and Nigerian stock exchanges.

Published on June 09, 2020

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