According to CAK, between January and March, the mobile subscriptions in Kenya grew from 37.7 million to 38.3 million which is an increase of 3.5 million subscriptions compared to the same quarter of the previous financial year. Subsequently, mobile penetration grew by 1.5 percent age points to stand at 89.2 per cent up from 87.7 per cent recorded last in the findings. Sema Mobile Services, a licensed Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) launched its services during the same period.
The net additions in mobile subscriptions stood at 660,867 compared to last quarter’s decline of 149,263 subscriptions.
Safaricom Kenya Limited gained a market share of 0.9 per centage points to post 65.6 per cent up from 64.7 per cent market share posted during the previous quarter. Airtel Networks on the other hand lost its market share by 1.7 per cent to register 17.5 per cent market share during the quarter. In compliance with the new SIM card regulations which require new mobile subscribers to produce identification documents, the operator carried out a SIM barring exercise in mid-December 2015 which led to the disconnection of over 500, 000 subscribers.
Orange Kenya Limited recorded a market share of 12.5 per cent up from 12.4 per cent recorded during the last quarter. Finserve Africa Limited also gained a market share of 0.7 per cent to stand at 4.4 per cent market shares. Sema Mobile services, which launched its services this year, had insignificant numbers of 158 subscriptions (0.0 per cent).
The number of post-paid and pre-paid subscriptions for each of the operators experienced substantial change. Safaricom gained 2.8 per cent and 9.5 per cent of its pre-paid and post-paid subscribers respectively. Its total subscriptions stood at 25.1 million up from 24.4 million posted during the previous quarter, representing growth of 3.1per cent during the quarter.
Total subscriptions for Airtel Network Limited decreased by 7.1 per cent from 7.2 million subscriptions recorded in the previous quarter to 6.7 million subscriptions during the quarter under review. Both pre-paid and post-paid subscriptions declined by 7.7 per cent and 3.9 per cent respectively. The decline is attributed to the SIM barring exercise carried out by the operator in mid-December 2015 in compliance with the new SIM card registration regulations. The exercise disconnected over 500,000 SIM cards.
The total subscriptions for Orange Kenya Limited increased by 3.1 per cent to reach 4.8 million up from 4.6 million subscriptions recorded with in the last quarter. The pre-paid and post-paid subscriptions increased by 3.1 and 1.4 per cent respectively. Finserve Africa Limited recorded 1.6 million pre-paid subscriptions whereas Sema Africa Limited recorded 158 pre-paid subscriptions.