MTC takes control in Sudan

Working through its pan-African Celtel operations, the Kuwaiti mobile operator has increased its stake in Sudan's Mobitel to 100%, in a deal worth US$1.33 billion.

Kuwaiti mobile operator MTC has taken full control of Sudanese GSM operator Mobitel. Working through its pan-African operation Celtel International, MTC has acquired the 61% stake in Mobitel that it did not already own from Sudatel, in a deal worth US$1.33 billion.

“This represents a great opportunity that will allow us to fully integrate Mobitel to the MTC family and take advantage of group synergies. We are also keen on expanding our operations throughout Sudan including the southern region of the country. We expect to add over 1 million customers during the next 12 months in Sudan,” Saad Al Barrak, MTC managing director says.

Mobitel is the number one mobile operator in Sudan with over 1.9 million subscribers, a rise of 70% over the past year. Bashair Telecom, which had 302,900 subscribers as of the end of January 2006, is the country’s only other operator. Sudan itself represents one of MTC’s largest markets in terms of population, counting 34.4 million inhabitants. Mobile market penetration stands at around 7%. MTC plans to invest approximately US$500 million in the Mobitel network before 2008.

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