Airtel Networks Kenya Ltd. (Airtel Kenya) has signed a definitive agreement with Essar Telecommunications Kenya, which operates under the brand name yuMobile, to acquire its 2.7 million subscribers. This deal is subject to approval from Competition Authority of Kenya (CAK) and is likely to be concluded by the fourth quarter of 2014, the company has said. Airtel Kenya had first sought approval to acquire the subscriber base of Essar's yuMobile from Communication Authority (CA) of Kenya in March 2014. Later that month, Airtel Kenya and Safaricom had received approval from CA of Kenya to acquire the telecom license and subscribers of yuMobile. The final approval was dependent on both companies paying $5.4 million as fee for Essar Telecom Kenya Ltd.’s licences apart from meeting other conditions. While Airtel has now acquired yuMobile's user base, Safaricom has acquired yuMobile’s base stations and associated infrastructure. No official word on the deal size has been received by Medianama, but this Economic Times report pegs the total deal value at $120 million. yuMobile's CEO Madhur Taneja told ET that this deal will not affect the customers. They'll be able to retain their numbers and won't have to change their SIM cards either. Close to 90% of yuMobile's employees are expected to be absorbed by Airtel Kenya and Safaricom. Airtel's Africa Stratgey Airtel wants to be one of the top two telcos in countries where it is operational in Africa. In fact, during Airtel's Q3-FY14 earnings conference call, managing director and CEO (International) of Bharti Airtel Manoj Kohli said that…
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