Kenya's Safaricom launches in Ethiopia
Kenya’s telecom giant Safaricom has launched its network in Ethiopia, becoming the first private operator in one of Africa’s biggest markets.
Safaricom switched on its network and services in the capital Addis Ababa following network pilots in 10 cities, it said in a statement.
Safaricom leads a consortium which includes South Africa’s Vodacom and the UK’s Vodafone.
Its entry into the Ethiopian market comes after Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed took power in 2018 with a promise to liberalise the economy.
State-owned Ethio Telecom had until now monopolised the industry.
Ethiopia is seen as a lucrative market, with a population of around 110 million – the biggest in Africa after Nigeria.
Kenya’s President William Ruto is in Addis Ababa for the official launch, his first visit to the country since he took office in August after winning elections.