In a shocking turn of events, our sources have alerted us upon the departure of Baharti Airtel from Uganda. This has come to be due to the poor performance of the Telecom company across all African markets.
The affected countries include: Uganda, Kenya, Malawi, Madagascar, Gabon, Chad, Ghana, Seychelles, Tanzania, Rwanda, Zambia, Congo, Nigeria. Airtel will exit these countries within a year.
2 years ago, Airtel seemed to have everything in control when it initiated talks with fellow Telecom giant Orange to sell off its operations in-Burkina Faso, Chad, Congo Brazzaville and Sierra Leone.
As of 2014, Airtel had 7 million subscribers in Uganda second to the market leader MTN. In 2015 the business had 76.3 million customers across the continent and number two in 14 countries in Africa.
Ugandan history of present day Airtel
In June 2010, Airtel services were launched in Uganda. Before that, many Ugandans had to bear the changing facades of this company that looks to be heading into another identity.
This story dates back in 1995 in a time when we had Celtel as the first Telecommunication company in Uganda. Celtel enjoyed its operations with the likes of MTN in the market until July 2007 when the company changed its brand name to Zain Uganda and then later to Airtel in 2010.
In May 2013, Airtel acquired Warid Telecom at an astonishing Shs 1.8 trillion which helped the growth of its market base as it looked.
Related: WBS TV Sold To Zimbabwe Tycoon
The beginning of the end
Financial filings in 2013 showed the company was operating in a deficit of Shs.253 billion. This figure was to grow again in 2014 to Shs.266 billion. Later that year in August, Airtel hired Tom Gutjahr to replace Arindam Chakrabarty who had been the acting Managing Director of Airtel Uganda.
Unfortunately after 1 year and 9 months in office, Tom’s services were called off in 2016.
Elvis Rodney is a talented freelance author for Newslibre and Director of Marketing at innovware. He loves writing about Sports, Entertainment and Political issues across the world.