Fifth cellco launches

17 Mar 2008

Nigeria’s fifth cellco, Etisalat, has officially launched services over its new network. Emerging Markets Telecommunications Services (EMTS), a Nigerian firm, entered into partnership with Mubadala Development Co. of the United Arab Emirates following Mubadala’s acquisition of a Unified Access Licence that includes a mobile phone concession from the Nigerian government in January 2007 for USD400 million. Etisalat acquired a 40% stake in EMTS and now operates the licence. Hakeem Bello-Osagie, chairman of EMTS, revealed that Etisalat is expected to use a marketing strategy of reduced tariffs to take market share from established operators in Nigeria.

According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms database, there were a total of 39.6 million wireless subscribers in Nigeria at the end of 2007, with three players dominating the market: MTN Nigeria (40.4% market share), Globacom (32.4%) and Celtel Nigeria (29.7%). GlobalComms contains quarterly wireless market share data for more than 160 countries worldwide. For further information, visit: