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Safaricom Ethiopia Gears Up for Commercial Launch | To Invest $8.5bn in the Country

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Safaricom Telecommunications Ethiopia PLC (Safaricom Ethiopia) has today announced a countrywide staff recruitment drive and introduced its leadership team as it affirmed its commitment to investing in Ethiopia’s digital future ahead of its commercial launch.

The recruitment drive comes two months after Safaricom through its Global Partnership for Ethiopia (GPE) appointed Mr. Anwar Soussa as the Managing Director (MD) of the Operating Company in Ethiopia, effective 1st July 2021. He will report to the Board of the Ethiopia entity and Safaricom PLC CEO.

At Safaricom Ethiopia’s new offices, Mr. Peter Ndegwa, Chief Executive Officer of Safaricom PLC, leading a senior delegation from the Global Partnership for Ethiopia (GPE) conveyed the shareholders’ commitment to investment in Ethiopia and contributing to the achievement of the digital Ethiopia objectives.

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“The Global Partnership for Ethiopia is proud to be investing in Ethiopia and thanks the Government of Ethiopia and other key partners for their support in the initial preparations for commercial launch. Such partnerships are the building blocks of digital transformation, and I would like to thank all our partners for their support as we work towards enabling our commercial launch and contribution to digital Ethiopia as a purpose-led technology company,” said Peter Ndegwa.

In May this year, the Safaricom-led consortium was offered an Ethiopian operating license after successful $850 million bid. The consortium which includes Vodacom, Vodafone and British development finance agency CDC Group and Japans Sumitomo Corporation. The consortium plans to invest over$ 8.5 billion in infrastructure over a decade and create up to 1.5 million jobs.

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The Prime Minister said that this will be a single largest Foreign Direct Investment in to Ethiopia to date. That their desire to take Ethiopia fully digital is on track. He thanked all that have taken part in this and for pulling off a very transparent and effective process.

The Ethiopian Government had ealier planned to give two telecom licenses but in April, it announced it had received only two bids after some firms that had earlier expressed interest opted out, including Orange form France and Etisalat from UAE.

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Mr. Anwar Soussa, Managing Director of Safaricom Ethiopia, provided updates on the preparations for commercial launch, notably that the company has commenced recruitment of Ethiopian nationals for technology, commercial and corporate functions in various capacities ranging from executive management to graduate level opportunities.

“Our ongoing recruitment process is intentionally guided by the promise of a digital future for the people of Ethiopia. By June next year, we aim to build a team of 1000 employees driven by innovation and digital solutions. We will also offer all employees comprehensive digital training packages through our #1moreskill training programme – a gateway to new skills in the digital economy,” he said.

Additionally, the company is set to recruit 450 graduates over the next three years into a global development programme dubbed the “Discover Graduate Management Programme”. The graduates will undergo accelerated learning rotations across different functions in the business as well as extensive leadership coaching and mentorship programmes.

Mr. Soussa added: “We believe young people are the key to delivering the digital Ethiopia ambitions and with our global Discover Graduate Management Programme, we will create a pool of talent of digital innovators who will grow with the business to achieve this.”

As part of the ongoing recruitment process, the company officially introduced the 11 confirmed members of its Executive Committee (ExCo).

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Milcah Lukhanyu
Milcah Lukhanyu
I cover tech news across Africa. Drop me an email at [email protected]

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