South Africa’s communications minister, Ivy Matsepe, has approved two contenders to enter bidding negotiations for a 51% stake in a newly created telecoms operator. The new company is being established to end the monopoly of fixed line telcoms operator Telkom. The two bidders approved are CommuniTel and Two Consortium. CommuniTel consists of former BT Group executives, Gateway Communication, Telecom Namibia, and former military personnel of the African National Congress. Two Consortium includes the Scandinavian company Swedtel. The two contenders must now submit their final offers to South Africa’s regulatory agency, the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA), for approval. The operator will have full access to all of Telkom’s facilities for two years to ensure survival until its own infrastructure is built.