MTN Ghana to fork out R1bn for a 4G/LTE licence

MTN to spend more than R1 billion ($67.5 million) in Ghana to buy a 15 year 4G/LTE licence in the 800 MHz spectrum band.

MTN Ghana has won a licence to build a 4G/LTE network in Ghana after an auction held by the National Communications Authority (NCA) of Ghana.

The NCA will award the licence and spectrum to MTN Ghana once the licence fee has been paid.

“The award of this licence will enable MTN Ghana to launch 4G/LTE services to support the increasing demand of data services and improve customers’ data usage experience,” the mobile operator informed investors on Thursday.

MTN Ghana has more than 15 million subscribers at the end of the third quarter of 2015.

Data revenue increased 78,6% year-on-year for the nine months period ended 30 September 2015 and contributed 28,7% to total revenue. For the same period the operation had approximately 3 million smartphones on its network.

Previously, MTN Ghana was only able to provide 2G and 3Gservices (voice and data) to its customers using 900Mhz, 1800Mhz and 2100Mhz spectrum which cannot be extended for 4G/LTE technology due to licence restrictions.

As part of the licence and spectrum conditions, MTN Ghana is required to have a minimum of 35% Ghanaian ownership in place within 13 months from the effective date of the licence.

MTN said it is “exploring various options to comply with the eligibility criteria”.


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