Telkom Kenya and Airtel Kenya have announced the signing of an agreement to merge their mobile, enterprise and carrier services businesses to operate under a joint venture company to be known as Airtel-Telkom. While the final shareholding will be determined at the closing of the transaction, Telkom Kenya has the option of holding up to 49% of the combined entity, which will create a stronger challenger to market leader Safaricom. Airtel and Telkom said that both brands, as well as their respective products and solutions, will continue to co-exist, and service delivery will continue to operate as usual. The pair state that the combined entity will benefit from ‘enhanced scale and efficiency, larger distribution network and strategic brand presence, thereby enhancing the range and quality of products and service offerings in the market, and greater choice and convenience to the consumer.’
TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database states that Telkom is 60% owned by Helios Investment Partners, with the remainder held by the government, while India’s Bharti Airtel is the 100% shareholder of Airtel Kenya. The finalisation and closure of the transaction is subject to approval by the relevant authorities.