Why Airtel, Telkom have failed to whittle down Safaricom market share
By Paul Wafula
Airtel Africa boss Raghunath Mandava had a rare chance to get excited last week when results of the Indian telecommunications giant were released.
The chief executive officer, who had seen the African business lose so much money that his parent company Bharti Airtel started considering pulling out of some key markets on the continent, had for the first time a different story to tell investors.
Airtel Africa was reporting a profit. Mr Mandava said he sees the 2017 financial year as the watershed year for Airtel in Africa.
Along with decent revenue growth, Airtel had managed to cut down absolute operating costs for the entire African business by 9.2 per cent.
This expanded its margins from 24 per cent to 33.4 per cent, and in turn helped push the firm out of the red to end the year in the profit zone.
Photo courtesy of Scott Mainwaring.