A New Telecommunications Operator is been Stabilized to Accomplish Nigeria’s $80 Billion Telecommunications Industry
By Abdul Rahman Bangura–
NEW AFRICA BUSINESS NEWS (NABN) Freetown, Sierra Leone- Quite recently, a certain telecommunications operator is wafted to join Nigeria’s $80 billion telecoms enterprise as the fifth largest firm. Precisely, Orange which is believed is the widest telecommunications operator in France, tells it is preparing proposals to broaden its systems to Nigeria, and South Africa.
Stéphane Richard – Chief Executive Officer of Orange acquainted the media that, the corporation understands; it would sustain from having a wider impression in Africa, and will bestow itself a few months to make a feasible move.
“It could make sense to be in economies such as Nigeria and South Africa. If one considers there are things to do, the time frame I am considering is rather a few months than a few years,” he clarified.
Nonetheless, Richard receded to note on apparent investment in MTN Group Limited, the largest telecommunications company in South Africa and Nigeria. Orange’s fastest-growing market is in the Middle East and Africa, where it has an existence in eighteen states.
Furthermore, Orange had before now announced that, it would integrate its undertakings in the Middle East and Africa into a single entity, to make way for a possible listing and generate money for proliferation to other nations. In addendum, Orange has 266 million customers worldwide, with 89,000 employees in France, and another 59,000 in other parts of the world where its operations are positioned. It is similarly, the tenth-largest mobile network operator in the world, and the fourth largest in Europe after Vodafone, Telefónica, and Veon.
Orange announcement attains six months after it officially established the Orange Middle East and Africa (Orange MEA) operational head office in Morocco. The arrival of Orange is anticipated to improve the competition in the Nigerian industry, which is now home to four major operators, which but not included to MTN, and Airtel (which started in Nigeria as Econet) in 2001. Indigenous operator, Globacom entered the space in 2003, while 9Mobile, formally Etisalat began operations in 2009.
The arrival of these operators sparked what is today called ‘telecom revolution’. Prior to 2001, Nigeria could only boast of about 425,000 phone lines, mostly analogue. The country was then ranked among Afghanistan and other war-ravaged and economically-strangled nations in terms of telecom development. Within the past eighteen years, the number of active phone lines in the country has risen to over 180 million.
Reacting to the development, a telecoms analyst, Kehinde Aluko, said market opportunities are still very huge in Nigeria, and the coming of another operator, a big
one like Orange would further deepen the competition and ensure subscribers are offered the best of services. He added that, many things can still arise in the sector estimated to worth $70 billion. “Nigeria telecom has bolted from the stacks of inertia unlike other sectors. In a season of recession which made other sectors of the economy to slide and steep, telecom bucked the trend. It remained resolute and resilient against centrifugal headwinds.”
Aluko said it is a huge positive for the President Muhammadu Buhari’s government that at a time the national economy dropped south, telecom stayed up north with pleasant signs of a glorious future.
“Besides, it has remained attractive for investors. Many reasons account for this – largest population (market) in Africa, growing middle class (workforce) of 23 per cent of population, and 37% population within the age bracket of 15-35 years. There is also a vast field for broadband services opportunity, growing e-commerce, e-banking, etcetera and ,a lifestyle that encourages communication (both voice and data); there is still more room for investors,” he stated.
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