Telkom Kenya (TKL) today announced it had reached a deal for American Tower Corporation (ATC) to acquire up to 723 towers from TKL in Kenya. Telkom Kenya’s Board Chair, Eddy Njoroge stated that TKL said the deal will enhance the quality and reliability of its network to the benefit of customers .
“We are delighted to have signed the agreement with ATC and look forward to a close collaboration between the two companies,” said Mr Njoroge. “The Board of TKL has made it clear that our objective is to transform Telkom into a business which has a reputation for excellence in terms of the quality and reliability of its network. This agreement, in which we will be partnering with a leading global tower company, will enhance the quality and reliability of our network to the benefit of our customers.”
Mr William H. Hess, ATC President of EMEA and Latin America stated said they are excited to launch operations in Kenya through through the agreement to acquire TKL’s towers. This represents American Tower’s 17th market globally, and its fifth in Africa.
“And we look forward to helping expand the reach of mobile broadband throughout the country. Kenya is a very attractive market, and we have high expectations for its long-term growth potential,” said Mr Hess.
Telkom Kenya CEO Aldo Mareuse said the network availability and service levels Telkom has agreed with ATC are world class. “This agreement represents another important step towards the transformation of this business and the service levels we deliver to our customers,” he said.
Mr Mereuse said Telkom will now focus on its core function of providing quality telecommunications services to customers.
In addition, the sale will release capital for further investment in its 4G network and a number of state of the art IT platforms, he added, to further enhance services for its customers, who are demanding higher quality and speed from Telkom mobile data networks as well as a richer range of services.
The transaction is expected to close in the second half of 2018, subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approval.
Telkom Kenya’s five-year strategy includes investing Ksh15.2 billion ($150 million) in its 3G and 4G networks as well as mobile financial services and customer experience. Private equity firm, Helios, bought into Telkom Kenya in 2016, saying it intended to rescue the ailing company through heavy investments and an overhaul of management.
Telkom Kenya says it has already invested about Ksh5.6 billion in expanding and modernising its network, including launching 4G services. The company is also set to receive a Ksh4.1 billion ($40 million) loan from the European Investment Bank to boost infrastructure and mobile money network.