Telecoms News: In Brief
* Sudan-based telecoms group Sudatel announced last Friday that it hopes to double its market share in Senegal this year and has plans to cut prices and introduce new services at its Expresso unit to achieve this. The Senegalese mobile sector is currently dominated by Sonatel's Orange brand, with two-thirds of the market, followed by Millicom International Cellular's (MIC’s) Tigo unit. Expresso Senegal Chief Executive Officer El Amir Ahmed El Amir told reporters ‘Our market share in mobile is now 5% but is planned to be 12% very soon.’ The smaller operator has announced an immediate 7% reduction in pre-paid voice tariffs and a migration from its existing CDMA-based platform to the GSM standard. Expresso hopes to use the more widely available GSM technology to bring in new services such as mobile internet, TV and video-on-demand (VoD). Existing Expresso CDMA users will be able to migrate to the new GSM services and keep the same number, officials have said
* Johannesburg — Telkom subsidiary Trudon will ask the Competition Appeal Court to reverse the Competition Tribunal decision to grant interim relief to Directory Solutions against Telkom with costs. Directory Solutions applied for an interim relief in March against Trudon, arguing the company was discriminating against its clients. Trudon, formerly known as Telkom Directory Services, is 64.9% owned by Telkom and publishes the Phone Book and Yellow Pages with the names, addresses and telephone numbers of Telkom's customers for free. However, it charges customers that wish to advertise, and for enhanced directory listings, which include making listings in the directory prominent. Directory Solutions complained that Trudon forced clients to pay up front for submitting their entries through Directory Solutions, whereas all other clients made monthly payments on their telephone accounts. In April, the Competition Tribunal granted Directory Solutions interim relief and ordered Telkom, with costs, to publish all subscriber entries provided by Directory Solutions.