According to Alpesh Patel, CEO of Mi-Fone, the plant will enable retailers and phone suppliers to get handsets manufactured by Mi-Fone tailored to meet their local requirements, without having to travel to manufacturers in China.
Mi-Fone is currently meeting with potential investors and companies in Abu Dhabi on the planning and building of the factory. Patel estimates that it will be six weeks before the company will be able to begin the first stages of planning and construction.
NCC studies showed that network congestion was responsible for poor service quality. Tests on some 100 base stations showed extreme congestion on 30%.
According to NCC, operators must invest more in the networks over a certain period. NCC plans to publish network congestion levels.
Monitise, a mobile banking service provider has launched a trial mobile payments service in Nigeria. The service is tested in four cities and 11 rural locations across four states under a Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) provisional licence.
Monitise’s pilot has already created 16 full-time jobs for field support staff to assess, vet, recruit and train agents. Funds can be deposited by agents at branches of Monitise’s first Nigerian bank partner, Afribank. Once users have registered, whether by simple self-registration or through an agent, they can access Monitise Mobile Money through an internet browser on their mobile handset.
Although the service works across all mobile networks, Etisalat Nigeria, the country’s fastest growing mobile network operator, is providing Monitise with access to their call centre, USSD service, promotional material, dealer network and agent assistance.
Monitise has been supported by the Africa Enterprise Challenge Fund (AECF), which has provided grant funding to assist in the launch of its Mobile Banking and payments service.
The trial involves the four states of Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt, and Ibadan. The 11 rural locations are: Epe, Otta, Ayobo-Ipaja, Akufo, Ologun-eru, Apete, Gwagwalada, Ikorodu, Gawaki, Jikwoyi and Choba.
Etisalat Nigeria has announced an evaluation of its running Easylife proposition of US$0.001 per second at a minimal daily charge of US$0.12 per day. The new Easylife 2.0 proposition now costs US$0.001 per second to all networks in Nigeria and the US and all landlines in the UK.
The service comes with 20 free Etisalat to Etisalat SMS per day, equal to 600 free SMS every month, and is available to Easystarter and Easycliq subscribers. Easylife 2.0 has a daily charge of US$0.16.
According to company’s CCO Wael Ammar, this was another demonstration of Etisalat’s resolve to constantly ensure its subscribers enjoy quality service at the best value for money.
According to Omo-Ettu, the poor quality of services is puzzling and has called on telecom companies to upgrade their services to customers immediately. Recent studies into the sector have shown unsteady and clearly substandard services. This includes the mobile services, which account for 98 percent of the total telecom services in the country.
According to MTN, the poor services have to be changed. He added that his company was moving in the direction of providing better quality service to their users.
Nigerian CDMA operator Starcomms has launched a value-added service for job-seekers, dubbed as Jobs-on-phone. It is a personalized, voice-based job portal, which helps Starcomms customers seek new employment or recruitment opportunities through their fixed or mobile phones.
The Starcomms service is designed as a portal, which links employees with prospective employers. It is a service that can be easily accessed by all mobile and fixed Starcomms customers anytime and anywhere, thus providing a large-scale database of jobseekers.
Customers can dial the service code *32640 to register and create their profile in the voice database before they can use the Starcomms Jobs-on-phone service. The required data will include information like age, gender, location, qualifications and experience.
MTN Nigeria has signed a strategic data bundle deal with Samsung Mobile. As per the agreement, a number of Samsung phones will be loaded with exclusive MTN bundle that offers special free downloads, voice/video calls and a free MTN SIM card.
According to Samsung Handheld Director Fady Khatib, the phones involved in the bundle offer were equipped with Google Android operating system and Google mobile services, including Gtalk, Gmail, YouTube, Google Maps and application store. The phones are also equipped with Samsung Integrated messaging solution, which supports multiple emails, IM and personal information management solutions.
He added that each phone comes with a 12-month warranty and after sales support. The trio of Samsung Galaxy 5, Samsung Galaxy S and Samsung Galaxy Tab are the three devices that will be loaded with the MTN data bundle.
He stated that the new Samsung Galaxy 5 was 3G compatible phone and it was pre-loaded with social networking applications such as Facebook and Twitter, among others. It also comes with an exclusive MTN Bundle of 750MB of free data downloads and is valid for three months. The retail price for this bundle offer is US$205.66.
Uche was the head of Strategy and Brand department at Vodafone Ghana until her new appointment.
As per the company, Uche as CMO would be responsible for developing consumer marketing strategy and planning, generating deep customer insight, handling corporate communications and brand positioning and management. Her department will help drive sales promotions, advertising and go-to-market strategies.
Prior to joining Vodafone Ghana, Uche spent over six years in Nigeria working in various senior leadership roles in the telecommunications industry. She worked for Econet Wireless (now Airtel) and MTS First Wireless. She was also the media spokesperson and Marketing Director for Nurtricima Ltd where she led product innovation and marketing communication.
Uche has a B.A. in Political Science and recently completed a diploma in Strategic Marketing from Columbia Business School.
The new Commercial Director, Marc Norris, joined Vodafone in 2009 as a part of the Senior Management Team assigned to transform Ghana Telecom into Vodafone Ghana.
He previously served as the Director of Consumer Fixed, responsible for the broadband & fixed voice businesses.
Prior to joining Vodafone, Marc was the CEO of Oplayo Oy, GM of Consumer BT and GM of One.Tel.
Marc has also held senior operational/general management positions in the internet & telecoms sectors.
He has worked in the international telecom sector for 22 years specifically in Australia, Hong Kong, The Netherlands, France, UK, Saudi Arabia, Nigeria, Finland and Ghana.
According to Vodafone Ghana CEO, Kyle Whitehill, they are pleased to have Uche and Marc on board in their respective new positions. Vodafone believed their experiences would be invaluable to the company as it builds a stronger relationship with its Ghanaian customers and moves closer to their goal of becoming the telecommunications provider of choice in Ghana.
According to reports, the loan is being arranged by First Bank of Nigeria Plc, Zenith Bank Plc, Access Bank Plc, Fidelity Bank Plc and United Bank for Africa Plc. Others are Bank PHB Plc, Guaranty Trust Bank Plc and Oceanic Bank International Plc.
According to Chief Executive Officer Steven Evans, the company would invest $400 million in 2011; noting that $50 million out of the money would be specifically spent on 3G equipment.
According to Evans, the 3G network will be launched in Lagos, Port Harcourt and Abuja very soon, while other parts of the country will be covered in 2011.
Afinis combines the company’s Divona and Connecteo businesses, the two African telecoms businesses owned and operated by Monaco Telecom.
Afinis will provide network services on a regional basis targeting Africa’s largest enterprises. It will focus on five key industries, tailoring products for each: mining, oil & gas, banking, telecoms and international institutions.
Afinis has eight offices across the continent- in Morocco, Algeria, Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Guinea, Niger and Senegal.
The company will offer African businesses highly resilient satellite and fibre-optic network communications services, from secure internet to fully managed network services. It has access to three ground-based teleports connected to seven satellites and a MPLS network covering 153 countries. It has also set up two resilient network operating centres in Casablanca and Monaco for constant monitoring of client networks.