Airtel not exiting Rwanda market, says CEO

Airtel Rwanda has refuted reports indicating it was closing shop, terming the media reports pointing as erroneous.
Adjei speaks during the interview. He says right policies are key drivers of Internet penetration. (Teddy Kamanzi)
Adjei speaks during the interview. He says right policies are key drivers of Internet penetration. (Teddy Kamanzi)

Airtel Rwanda has refuted reports indicating it was closing shop, terming the media reports pointing as erroneous.

Speaking to The New Times, yesterday, Airtel Rwanda CEO Michael Adjei emphasised that they are “here for the long haul.”

“That’s not true. That’s not the case. Airtel Rwanda is not leaving the market. We want to assure customers that we are not exiting Rwanda,” Adjei.

This follows recent media reports indicating that Bharti Airtel, India’s largest mobile-phone operator and parent company to Airtel Rwanda, was exiting Africa over financial challenges.

Few days ago, the chairman of Bharti Airtel, Sunil Bharti Mittal, told Bloomberg that the firm was “considering mergers or stake sales of some of its Africa operations” to cut debt with a view of making its biggest overseas acquisition profitable.

Rwanda and 14 other countries, including Chad, Congo, Nigeria, Gabon, Ghana, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Niger, Nigeria, Seychelles, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia, were reportedly to be affected by the move.

However, Adjei said the telecom, with over 1.5 million subscribers in Rwanda, is not going anywhere.

Airtel is one of the three telecommunication companies operating in Rwanda besides MTN Rwanda, a subsidiary of MTN Group, and Tigo Rwanda whose parent company is Millicom.

editorial@newtimes.co.rw

 

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