Safaricom Ethiopia launched in Addis Ababa

Safaricom has today, October 6, launched its Ethiopia network commencing operations in 11 cities.

In an event graced by President William Ruto in Addis Ababa, Safaricom Ethiopia switched on its mobile telecommunications network and services.

Locals in the 11 regions will from today access 2G, 3G, and 4G mobile Safaricom services as plans to expand to 25 other cities by April 7, 2023, are underway.

“The network is 5G enabled in Addis but we’ll only be switching on 3G and 4G. US$300 million worth of equipment has been imported. We’ve signed an infrastructure sharing agreement with Ethiotelcom & have been granted access to the towers” said Anwar Soussa, Safaricom Ethiopia CEO.

For Safaricom, the journey to introducing services in Ethiopia has been a lengthy one. After extensive bidding and numerous governmental approvals, Safaricom was given the go-ahead to begin operating in Ethiopia sometime last year.

Safaricom Group CEO, Peter Ndegwa in a statement said he believes the company will leverage years of experience to transform Ethiopia’s telecommunications industry.

“We look forward to positively impacting the people of Ethiopia with a sustainable and quality mobile network that will be a vital launch pad for nationwide digital telecommunications services to over 118 million Ethiopians.”

While lauding the launch, Vodafone Group CEO Nick Read said, Nick Read, “We are excited to be part of this highly experienced international consortium, with a strong vision to advance Ethiopia’s inclusive digital society, with clear goals to deliver greater prospects for education, jobs, and prosperity.”

Safaricom Ethiopia is the subsidiary of Kenya’s largest mobile telecommunications company and which will be the first foreign investment in Ethiopia’s telecommunications scene. The government of Kenya has a 35 per cent stake in Safaricom.

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