Eto’o not network operator, regulator says

13 Jan 2012

Cameroon’s telecoms regulator, Agence de Regulation des Telecommunications (ART), has clarified that the mobile company owned by footballer Samuel Eto’o is only authorised to resell wireless services and is not permitted to operate its own mobile network, ending speculation that the firm was set to become Cameroon’s third full mobile licensee. Africa Review cites ART’s general manager, Jean-Louis Beh Mengue, as saying that Eto’o Telecom has joined around 60 other licensees in the country that are authorised to resell telephone traffic for Cameroon’s existing mobile network operators under their own brands. ‘To the extent the activities of Eto’o Telecom are couched on the networks of mobile telephone concessionaires, it must be clarified that this would involve the reselling of telephone traffic and not the establishment or the exploitation of a new mobile telephone network,’ Beh Mengue said. Meanwhile, the report also quotes a senior official in the Telecommunications Ministry as saying that ART ‘has found it necessary to make this clarification because different statements by Eto’o Telecom have created the impression that it is a third mobile telephone operator in the country.’ The unnamed official also revealed that the company has applied for a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) licence, although this request has not been approved and is still under consideration.

Cameroon, Eto’o Telecom (Set'Mobile)