Telecommunications Industry

Overview of the sector in Kenya

The telecoms industry in Kenya, just like the rest of the world, is going through profound changes. In the past decade, technological advancement and regulatory restructuring have transformed the industry. Markets that were formerly distinct, discrete and vertical have coalesced across their old boundaries with a massive investment of capital - much of it originating from private sector participants.

The result is new markets, new players, and new challenges. Market liberalisation efforts have also picked up ensuing the successful partial privatisation of Telkom Kenya Ltd (December 2007), divestment of GoK’s 25% stake in Safaricom Ltd through a public listing (May 2008), and the launch of fourth mobile operator Econet Wireless Kenya (November 2008). This has resulted into some of the world’s best known telecommunication providers – Vodafone, France Telecoms and Essar Communications through their investments in Safaricom Limited, Telkom Kenya Limited and Econet Limited respectively - being major players in the Kenyan market.

Ongoing infrastructural developments by operators have largely been focused on network expansion for increased nationwide coverage.