Third telecom operator hits the market today

KIGALI - The long-held duopoly of MTN and Rwandatel in the telecom sector ceases today as Millicom International Cellular (MIC), the country’s third national telecom operator officially launches its commercial services to the Rwandan market. The third operator will trade under the Tigo brand.
Tigo CEO Alex Camara
Tigo CEO Alex Camara

KIGALI - The long-held duopoly of MTN and Rwandatel in the telecom sector ceases today as Millicom International Cellular (MIC), the country’s third national telecom operator officially launches its commercial services to the Rwandan market.

The third operator will trade under the Tigo brand.

Tigo, which announced its entry into the country’s telecom market last week, is expected to do the commercial unveiling of its products including handsets, sim-cards and airtime as well as open its outlets around the country.

According to Alex Camara, Tigo’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), different promotional activities to unveil it products on the Rwandan market are planned.

“What we are doing tomorrow (today) is rollout our products on the market officially but there are many more activities that will be taking place subsequently,” said Camara without going into details.

Millicom paid some $67 million to secure a license as the 3rd national operator under the Tigo brand and the 072 digit code. It has since invested close to $52m in a national network rollout covering at least 13 districts to-date.

The districts covered from the 4 provinces include Ngoma, Nyagatare, Gicumbi, Huye, Musanze, Nyamagambe, Rubavu, Rusizi, Gasabo, Kicukiro and Nyarugege. Nine of the Distrcits have Tigo sites.

At the first Tigo press conference last week, officials revealed that by 2011 the entire Rwanda will be covered with Tigo network. It was also revealed that Tigo which boasts of a 3.5G network plans to hit the market with the lowest call tariffs.

“Tigo plans to offer the best prepaid plan in the market with the most affordable rates to call any time and to any number in Rwanda,” it said in a statement issued last week.

Some calls on Tigo network could for as low as Rwf 1.  

Tigo is a brand of Millicom International Cellular (MIC) which is a multi-national telecommunications company that is focused on developing telecommunication infra structure in emerging markets.

It operates in different African countries and South America. The country currently has approximately 1.5 million telephone subscribers out of Rwanda’s 10 million people.

The coming of Tigo is expected to move telecom prices lower in the country ranked having one of the highest telecom rates in the region.

The company last year beat numerous telecom giants, which included Zain, to win the license to operate as Rwanda’s Third National Operator (TNO) after Rwandatel and MTN Rwanda.

Tigo is a brand of Millicom International Cellular, a multi-national telecommunications company with operations in 13 countries including 3 in Central America, 3 in South America and 7 in Africa. As a brand in Africa, Tigo has been operational since 2006.

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