Kenya picks mobile short list

Kenya’s telecommunications regulator said it has narrowed down the contestants aiming to become the country’s third mobile operator to five firms.

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By  Richard Agnew Published  April 17, 2003

Kenya’s telecommunications regulator said it has narrowed down the contestants aiming to become the country’s third mobile operator to five firms.

After inviting bids in February, the Communications Commission of Kenya (CCK) said it had pre-qualified Swedish venture One Cellular Ltd, Econet Wireless Group of South Africa, Mobile Systems International of the Netherlands, a German consortium led by Detecom International, and a partnership between Telsar and Telecel of South Africa.

Each contestant will now be required to purchase a tender document to participate in the final bidding process, with the winner expected to be picked in July.

The third GSM operator will compete with Vivendi-owned Kencell and Safaricom, a partnership between Vodafone and the state-owned Telkom Kenya which serves 850,000 out of the country’s 1.5m-strong user base. At least 30% of the equity of the new operator will be owned by the government.

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