Pan African tower company Eaton Towers has signed a 15-year management and leasing deal with national telecommunications provider Telkom Kenya for the maintenance of its existing portfolio of over 1 000 towers and the construction of new tower sites.
As Telkom Kenya operated telecommunications company Orange Group’s mobile and fixed-line telecommunications services in Kenya, this would extend Eaton’s 2012 deal with Orange Uganda.
The announcement came as Eaton successfully secured $195-million in new equity through a third round of financing from majority shareholder Capital International Private Equity Fund and its coinvestment partners.
“The first deployment of this funding will be invested in upgrading Telkom Kenya's towers and building out new network coverage," Eaton Towers CEO Alan Harper said on Friday.
The extended agreement would see Telkom Kenya retaining ownership of its existing portfolio of over 1 000 towers, while Eaton Towers would invest in passive infrastructure upgrades and the construction of new towers to improve coverage and network quality.
In parallel, the partnership would create a solid platform that would allow Telkom Kenya to focus on developing value-added services, such as innovative data offers, as well as an enhanced customer care experience.
Telkom Kenya CEO Mickael Ghossein said the partnership would place the company in a strong position to expand its network and develop innovative new services.
“We wish to do this in rural areas particularly; helping us to achieve our ambition of providing the Kenyan population with excellent nationwide coverage and relevant offers,” he commented.
In addition, NYSE-listed Orange said the partnership represented an important step forward in the group's overall efforts to improve efficiency and control operating costs across its African footprint.
Sharing passive infrastructure was a key part of its strategy, with similar deals struck in Uganda, Cameroon and Côte d’Ivoire.