MTN Plans Entry into Namibia’s Mobile-Operator Market

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MTN plans to enter Namibia’s mobile-operator market through a tie-up with a state telecommunications firm, according to a report by Fitch’s BMI Research.

MTN Business Solutions Namibia, which is 30% owned by local shareholders, and local company Demshi Investment Holdings, will enter the market from June 2018 as mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs), BMI Research said.

Both operators were in negotiations to use state-owned TN Mobile’s 3G and LTE network. TN has a market share of just 4.5%, while MTC, another state-owned operator, has a share of 95.5%.

Since the only two mobile network operators in Namibia were state-owned, “the entrance of MVNOs is a welcome development to provide some much-needed competition”, BMI said.

However, the high penetration rate in Namibia’s mobile market meant there was limited room for organic subscription growth, and TN Mobile’s relatively low market share “will make it difficult for MVNOs to gain market share, as they will have to lure customers away from MTC”.

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