05 Jan Mali: Telecel Mali becomes nation’s third MNO following long-delayed commercial launch
Alpha Telecom Mali has finally confirmed its commercial launch, becoming the West African nation’s third mobile network operator (MNO). According to Agence Ecofin the cellco opened its network to the public on 28 December 2017, in line with a timetable it had announced when making a test call over its infrastructure in October that year. As previously reported by CommsUpdate, Alpa Telecom Mali formally signed on the dotted line for its licence all the way back in February 2013.
While it had been thought that the company would market its services under the ‘Atel’ brand name, it has instead launched as Telecel Mali. In terms of coverage, meanwhile, the new player’s service is initially limited to the nation’s capital, Bamako. However, it is understood that the network footprint is expected to be extended to other regions of the country during the first quarter of 2018. With around XOF100 billion (USD183 million) having been spent on the construction of the infrastructure, it reportedly has capacity for more than three million subscribers.
Alongside the introduction of fresh competition in the Malian cellular sector, Alpha Telecom CEO Souleymane Diallo has highlighted the jobs he expects his company to create, saying: ‘Direct and indirect jobs will be created with the recruitment of a hundred Malian employees, from the first year, and several thousand distributors and resellers; local subcontracting contracts for site construction and other deployment work, etc.’