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Telkom Kenya Loses 1.6 Million Customers

todayOctober 17, 2023 11

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Telkom Kenya, the third biggest telco in the country, lost 1.62 million subscribers between March last year and June this year amid the latest crackdown on irregularly registered SIM cards.

An analysis of official data shows that the telco had 2.25 million active subscribers as at June, a 39 percent dip from 4.14 million subscribers in March last year.

The Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) started switching off SIM cards that were not regularly registered from April last year— being the latest in an exercise that has been frequently undertaken since 2013.

Telkom Kenya is the only telco that lost subscribers in the wake of the crackdown, further hurting its ability to keep pace with market leader Safaricom and the second biggest firm in the industry, Airtel.

The crackdown slowed new subscriptions even as Safaricom and Airtel grew their active SIM cards by a combined 2.83 million between March and June, pushing the total number of active customers to 66.43 million from 64.96 million in March last year.

The slow growth in mobile subscriptions during the year is attributed to the SIM registration exercise that kicked-off in February 2022 with a deadline of October 2022 which resulted in deactivation of unregistered SIM cards.

Telkom has over the years struggled to keep pace with Safaricom and Airtel in the race for the local telecommunications market and the dip in active customers will significantly dent their revenues from calls, SMS and mobile money among other transactions.

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