Telecoms News - In Brief


- MTN South Africa and Clicks terminated an agreement for the sale of 17 Musica stores to the cellular operator, citing certain legal conditions that could not be met, the groups said last week. Clicks said the deal had been terminated by mutual agreement after less than half of the landlords, on whose consent the transaction hinged, approved leases being assigned to MTN. MTN in March announced it would buy 17 Musica stores and lease space in six other Musica outlets from listed health and beauty group Clicks for about R15 million. MTN planned to turn the stores into cellphone retailers, to expand its footprint.

- The Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority (TCRA) has published its 'Telecommunications Statistics from 2000 to June 2009' report, showing the country was home to a total of 14.723 million subscribers by the end of June 2009. The incumbent cellcos collectively added a net 840,000 subscribers in the three months to 30 June, with market leader Vodacom attracting 251,143 new users for a mid-year total of 5.921 million. Second place went to Zain which signed up a net 330,583 new users for a total of 4.435 million, however it faces an uphill task if it is to reach its stated goal of six million customers by the end of this year. Third place operator Tigo boosted its base by 314,565 to 3.264 million, although Zantel Mobile – once the nation’s fastest growing cellco – shipped 43,820 customers during the period for a total of 986,670. Meanwhile, the mobile arm of fixed line operator TTCL lost a net 9,000 subscribers in the second quarter for a total of 111,713 and three-year-old Benson Informatics Limited (BOL) had 3,500 subscribers, up 500 since the start of the year.

- Senegal was home to a total of 6,283 million mobile users by 30 June 2009, a cellular penetration of 51.63%, according to data published by the national regulator the Agence de Regulation des Telecoms et Postes (ARTP). However, net growth slowed in the second quarter of the year to 5.01% year-on-year – the lowest seen in a year – and below the quarterly growth of 11.03% in Q109 and 7.57% in Q408. As at 30 June 2009 Orange Senegal had a total of 4.04 million customers, ahead of MIC’s local subsidiary Tigo (Sentel) with 2.11 million and Sudatel affiliate Expresso with 133,194. Of total mobile base, 6.24 million were on pre-paid plans (99.33%) and 42,313 (0.67%) were on monthly contracts.