Airtel Kenya has confirmed that its network has ‘absorbed’ the mobile user base of Essar Telekom Kenya (yu), following the successful conclusion of a long-running buyout. Airtel Kenya CEO Adil El Youssefi told local journalists: ‘We completed the integration of the two systems three weeks ago’, adding that yu will be preserved as a ‘unique brand’ under Airtel, at least in the short-term.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, in August 2014 Indian conglomerate Essar Group agreed to sell yu to rivals Safaricom and Airtel Kenya for around USD120 million. Under the terms of the transaction, Safaricom bought yu’s passive network infrastructure, frequency spectrum, IT and office infrastructure, while Airtel acquired the cellco’s subscriber base. The acquisition received final approval from the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA), the Competition Authority of Kenya and the Capital Markets Authority of Kenya in November 2014.