Other Major African Mobile Markets: Future Growth Prospects

Whilst it would beyond the scope of this section to list details of every operator in Africa, mention should be made of the United Arab Emirates' Etisalat which has made a number of strategic acquisitions in Africa. It has made notable strides in both Egypt and Nigeria: two key African mobile markets, and in 2012 had some 23 million and 15 million mobile subscribers respectively. Its ownership of Telecel Faso in Burkina Faso was challenged, and currently rests with Planor.

Chart 1: Etisalat's Operations in Africa

Map of Etisalat African Operations, including Egypt, Tanzania and Moov

LAP Green Networks, the telecommunications investment arm of the Gaddafi Libyan government, perhaps also deserves a mention, as a group that arrived with substantial backing, but then struggled with a rag-bag of properties across the continent, particularly after the funding dried-up early in 2011 with the outbreak of civil war in Libya. Potentially its most successful asset - Zamtel in Zambia - was renationalised in early 2012. The government claimed that the original sell-off was flawed. In Rwanda the company failed to meet a number of Performance Indicators and it lost its licence, and in Niger it failed to pay for its licence.