Kenya’s mobile operators grow workforce by 23.8%

New jobs in Kenya’s mobile telecom sector increased at the fastest rate in five years in the year to June, up by 23.8 percent, according to data from the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA). The report shows that firms including Safaricom, Airtel and Telkom Kenya added 1,673 new jobs to their payroll in the year to June. The regulator linked the increase in new jobs to growth in investment in the sector, which rose to KES 57.5 billion from KES 41.8 billion the previous year, Business Daily reported.

The five firms registered as mobile telecommunication firms, including Mobile Pay and Equity Bank’s Finserve, registered combined revenues of KES 270.5 billion in the year to June, up from KES 247.3 billion. This was on the back of a 24.4 percent jump in voice traffic that saw Kenyans make 61.7 billion minutes of calls in the year, up from 49.6 billion a year earlier. Voice service held the highest revenue share at 39.0 percent followed by other mobile services, which include mobile money services, interconnection and roaming, at 33.0 percent. SMS revenue recorded the least share at 8.0 percent, said CA.

Safaricom recorded the highest revenue share for all mobile services, whereas Finserve recorded the least revenue share. Safaricom has recently ceded market share to Airtel, which is the second biggest operator in the country, and has recently embarked an aggressive hunt for subscribers.

Airtel Kenya’s market share based on voice traffic jumped to 34.8 percent in the year to June, from 25 percent in a similar period a year ago, according to the CA. In contrast, Safaricom’s share dipped from 70 percent to 60.6 percent in the period under review.

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