In a bid to streamline its African portfolio, Vodafone Group has concluded the sale of its 70% stake in Vodafone Ghana to Telecel Group. Ghana's National Communications Authority recently approved the sale, and the government will retain a 30% minority stake in the company. The deal's exact financial details remain undisclosed.
Vodafone's entry into Ghana's market dates back to 2008, when it played a pivotal role in developing the country's network infrastructure, and provided decent competition in Ghana's telecom space alongside the market leader, MTN, and other players like Airtel and Glo.
Vodafone currently ranks second in Ghana's mobile space, boasting over 7.5 million subscribers, which amounts to an 18.3% market share. While the company claims to be simplifying its African portfolio after selling Mpesa in 2020, the telecom giant has faced a tough year.
In January 2023, the Financial Times reported that the company plans to lay off hundreds of staff. While the company has not confirmed this, the landscape for tech companies has been dire, and such news might not be surprising.
Telecom companies are not exempt from the current global economic issues, and there are increased diversification efforts. On February 15, 2023, South Africa's Telkom announced a restructuring that would affect 1,770 jobs
While Vodafone looks to be streamlining its African presence, another telecom operator looks to be getting even more bullish.
Telecel Group, the new owner of Vodafone Ghana, has operated in 15 African countries since its founding by the late Congolese entrepreneur Miko Rwayitare in 1986. In 2017, the company rebranded, expanding its presence beyond telecoms to include e-commerce and startup initiatives.
Telecel Group boasts an impressive board of directors, including Hugues Mulliez, a member of one of France's most powerful families.
In a previous article, we pointed out that the Telecel group's expansions should be a noteworthy moment for Ghana. Their activities in other African countries suggest it can give MTN a run for its money in Ghana.
And competition can only be a good thing. Right?