Kenyan cellular licensee Econet Wireless has placed a KES9.3 billion (USD145 million) order with Ericsson for GSM network equipment. Econet has also launched a major recruitment drive, Business Daily reports, signalling that the firm is finally set to make its debut on the Kenyan mobile market after receiving its licence back in 2003. Essar of India recently acquired a 49% stake in Econet Kenya, bringing some much-needed financial muscle to the operation and kick-starting its long-awaited rollout. Econet says it plans to meet the July launch deadline that has been imposed by the country’s telecoms regulator, the Communications Commission of Kenya. The mobile market is currently home to two players, Safaricom and Celtel, with fixed line operator Telkom Kenya also set to launch a full mobile service alongside its existing fixed wireless networks.