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Orange acquires Airtel in Sierra Leone

Orange acquires Airtel in Sierra Leone.

French telecommunications firm Orange has announced that, together with its Senegal-based partner Sonatel, it has completed the acquisition of 100% of the mobile operator Airtel in Sierra Leone.

Orange states that since its January 2016 agreement with Bharti International, it has obtained all official approbations required to complete the transaction.

In its announcement release, Orange describes Airtel as the Sierra Leone's leading mobile operator with over 1.3 million customers (on the basis of active customers within a 30-day period) for a total population of 6.3 million people.

"With a mobile penetration of around 50% of the population, Sierra Leone offers considerable growth potential, particularly at a time when significant investments are underway to extend the operator's 3G network. This network, which already offers good coverage in Freetown and other major towns in Sierra Leone, is set to provide internet access to customers living outside major urban areas," says Orange.

Following the recent launch of operations in Liberia and Burkina Faso, Sierra Leone becomes the 21st country in MEA to join the Orange Group.

Bruno Mettling, Deputy Chief Executive Officer of the Orange group and Chairman & CEO of Orange MEA (Middle East and Africa), stated: "We are pleased to announce that the acquisition of the mobile operator Airtel in Sierra Leone has been finalised. This new acquisition, which will be consolidated by Sonatel, will further strengthen Orange's strategic position on the African continent."

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