The consortium’s plans to expand in Ethiopia have been complicated by the US state development agency’s decision to pause investments in the country.
A Vodafone Group consortium and MTN Group submitted bids for permits to operate in Ethiopia that were much less than what was sought by the government, people with knowledge of the matter said.
Vodacom Group is expanding its financial and e-commerce services in South Africa through a partnership with AliPay, seeking to accelerate growth in a market hampered by a lack of new broadband spectrum.
Safaricom of Kenya is holding talks with Amazon.com about the use of mobile money service M-Pesa on the e-commerce giant’s platform.
Kenya’s Safaricom posted a drop in its full-year core earnings as the impact of Covid-19 cut revenue from financial services and calls, though it predicted a recovery based on second-half numbers.
Ethiopia’s decision to exclude mobile money from the terms of two new telecommunications licences cost the government about R7-billion from bid levels, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said.
Ethiopia received bids for telecommunications licences from MTN Group and a consortium led by Vodafone Group, according to Brook Taye, an adviser in the finance ministry.