(Ecofin Agency) - Mobile operator Telkom Kenya, a joint venture between Helios Investment and the Kenyan government, signed a partnership agreement today November 2 with Swedish tech company Ericsson and the ICT systems integrator NEC XON to expand its 4G mobile network. Under this project, Telkom will invest nearly $100 million to deploy 2,000 telecom sites across the country by 2023.
Mugo Kibati (pictured), CEO of Telkom Kenya, explained that “two of our commitments are to better position infrastructure asset base and services to drive digital transformation within various customer segments thus providing them with more value, as well as bridge the digital divide through the expansion of mobile data networks.”
“We are already working on the upgrade and expansion of our network at the Coast. The partnership we have signed today will see Telkom and our partners kick off a new network expansion project, guided by our long-term growth strategy," he said.
Telkom Kenya’s new investment aligns with the company's strategic direction adopted in August 2020 to make it an integrated telecom provider and a future tech company. The plan focuses on four areas: “to better position our infrastructure asset base and services, to drive digital transformation within the Consumer, SME, Corporate and Public sectors to enable them to become smart entities; to create a future smart landing hub for the majority of submarine cables in the region as we continue to provide connectivity to all data entering and exiting Kenya; bridging the consumer digital divide - connecting the unconnected through the expansion of our 4G/LTE network, as well as through cutting-edge technologies such as Loon; up-skilling our employees to be future-fit, to serve the evolving needs of our customers,” the company said.
Mugo Kibati explained that Telkom Kenya's network expansion aims to give all Kenyans the opportunity to access "more competitive and comprehensive products that meet their different and evolving needs: browsing, downloading, streaming, mobile money transactions, reading online news, and updating their applications.” It is also a way for the company to attract new consumers and generate additional revenue in a market dominated by Safaricom.