Vodafone prepares African expansion plans

The CEO of Vodacom has dropped strong hints Vodafone, which recently gained control of the South African-based company, plans to use the mobile operator as a platform to make further headway into other countries on the continent.

This seemingly goes against recent statements from Vodafone's CEO, Vittorio Colao, who said that "while emerging markets are of interest to us, our primary focus will remain on driving results from our existing assets."

However, Vodacom CEO, Pieter Uys, claimed Vodafone had committed to use Vodacom to enlarge its sub-Saharan business and provide support on potential acquisitions: "If you look at the world there aren't many growth opportunities around; Africa is one of them."

Uys believes that, given the Vodafone size and brand, it will be able to participate in cell phone markets that need to undergo consolidation. He pointed to the DR Congo as an example where a country cannot sustain nine mobile operators, but only has a penetration of around 12 per cent.

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