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Kenya’s Safaricom Staff In The Process Of Setting Up Ethiopia Operations

The telco, will then gradually reduce Kenyan expertise and utilise local workforce as the business grows.

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Kenya’s Safaricom Staff In The Process Of Setting Up Ethiopia Operations

Safaricom’s staff will be heading to Ethiopia to facilitate operations for products and network development that will help it gain market share that is in the hands of state-owned Ethio Telecom. The Safaricom Ethiopia team will have its own framework and ecosystem, including its own CEO, executive team and full management team.

Safaricom CEO Peter Ndegwa said the telco is out to achieve a high network coverage in a market with more than 100 million people and a relatively lower uptake of mobile and internet services. “We will need to second several people to be able to inject the level of expertise, both on the technology side, but also on the commercial side,” said Mr Ndegwa. “But quickly (we will) start to embed local talent, to ensure that their flavour of the business will start being Ethiopian. We intend to make sure that long term that business is truly Ethiopian.”

Safaricom knows the layout of the sector well, as it has the knowledge and abilities to employ strategies that saw it overtake Airtel Kenya, then operating as Kencell, in the mobile phone market nearly two decades ago. Now, the battle will be against Ethiopia Telecom.

Safaricom chief finance officer Dilip Pal says the telco’s strategy in Ethiopia is to build a high-quality mobile network as opposed to just competing on price.

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“The fundamental to our success in that market is building a great quality network. Once we do that, we believe that the digital services that we can offer to our customers will enable customer stickiness,” said Mr Dilip.

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