Telkom Kenya said on Wednesday it was no longer pursuing a proposed joint venture transaction with the Kenyan unit of India’s Bharti Airtel.
Bharti Airtel had said in February 2019 its Airtel Networks Kenya unit had agreed to buy Telkom Kenya, the East African nation’s smallest operator in which the state still has a 40% shareholding, after a majority stake was sold in 2007.
“After carefully reviewing the available options, Telkom has opted to adopt an alternative strategic direction and will no longer be pursuing the proposed joint venture transaction. This decision has been mutually agreed with Airtel Networks Kenya Limited,” Telkom Kenya said in a statement.
The statement comes as Telkom Kenya last month launched loon, 4G enabling balloons in partnership with American tech giant, Alphabet.
It now has the potential to expand its internet subscription by 4.8 million users.
Loon is a network of stratospheric balloons designed to bring internet connectivity to rural and remote communities worldwide.
The high-altitude balloons in the stratosphere (altitude: 18km to 25km) create an aerial wireless network with up to 4G-LTE speeds.
The solar and wind powered balloons have been entering Kenya’s airspace from different parts of the world since March, a month after the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA) approved entry after two years of contention.
According to the latest statistics from the Communication Authority of Kenya, Airtel gained by 0.7 percentage points to post 26.6 percent market share recording a 4 per cent increase in mobile subscribers.
Airtel subscribers grew from 14,118, 569 in December 2019 to 14,682,293 in March 2020.
Telkom Kenya lost 0.4 percentage points to post a market share of 5.8 percent with 3,190,661 subscribers.
Via The Star
Kenyan Business Feed is the top Kenyan Business Blog. We share news from Kenya and across the region. To contact us with any alert, please email us to [email protected]