Airtel Africa makes its fifth market consolidation move by acquiring Tigo Rwanda
January 17, 2018
Airtel Africa confirmed that they have entered an agreement with Millicom to acquire Tigo Rwanda, marking their fifth market consolidation move in Africa since 2013. Whilst the details of the acquisition and approval from Rwanda’s Utilities Regulatory Authority (RURA) have not been finalised, Airtel has spoken about the potential changes that will take place in the Rwandese telecoms market.
Airtel Rwanda has experienced some volatility in the Rwandan market as overall subscriptions shrunk by 6% between Q4 2016 – Q3 2017 ,this acquisition will consolidate Airtel Rwanda’s position to become the leading operator in the Rwandese mobile market which now serves 8 million subscribers between three mobile networks with 68% mobile penetration.
• As of Q3 2017, market share by subscriptions was split between MTN (44%), Tigo (36%) and Airtel (20%).
• Millicom and Bharti Airtel both have existing plans to consolidate their assets across Africa and recently completed a merger of their respective Ghanaian mobile networks in November 2017.
• If the acquisition is approved by RURA, Airtel is set to become the largest mobile operator in Rwanda with a forecasted market share of 54-56% of the market once Tigo’s subscribers are absorbed into Airtel’s network.