Zain sells and leases back passive infrastructure from IHS

Zain Kuwait has completed the sale and leaseback of the passive physical infrastructure of its 1,620 mobile tower portfolio for US$130 million (KD 40 million) to IHS Holding Limited (IHS). The transaction is the first sale and leaseback of telecom towers in the Middle East region by a licensed mobile operator.  

Under the terms of the transaction, Zain is selling only its passive, physical infrastructure to a new purposely created entity

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Batelco introduces 5G roaming with du in the UAE

Following Zain Group’s regional milestone announcement in November 2019 that its operations in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia had successfully launched the first 5G roaming service across the MENA region, Bahrain telco Batelco has announced partnering with the UAE’s du to deliver 5G international roaming services in the UAE.

Batelco becomes the first operator in Bahrain to provide 5G roaming services outside of the Kingdom

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Vodacom pledges 5G launch in South Africa in 2020

South Africa’s Vodacom Group has unveiled plans to launch 5G in its home market in 2020 despite issues acquiring spectrum from the country’s regulator.

Vodacom also revealed a 6.6 per cent year-on-year increase in Group revenue to ZAR23.6 billion (US$1.59 billion) in its fiscal Q3 to end-December

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STC buys into Egypt with acquisition of Vodafone stake

Vodafone Group has agreed a deal to sell its 55 per cent stake in Vodafone Egypt to Saudi operator STC for US$2.4 billion, as part of plans to reduce debt and refocus on core markets.

STC is yet to complete due diligence on the acquisition, which will also require regulatory approval

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Saudi Arabia to double the number of MVNOs with the offer of two new licenses

Saudi Arabia’s Communications and Information Technology Commission (CITC) has tendered two new mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) licenses, which “will likely boost investment opportunities in the telecom industry, support entrepreneurship and enhance the content industry as well as service diversification,” CITC Governor, Mohammed Altamimi is quoted as saying.

Virgin Mobile Saudi and Jawraa Lebara were licensed in 2014, operating on STC’s and Mobily’s networks respectively

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