Eswatini Mobile to invest $11 mln in Apr-Dec 2023 to improve coverage


(Ecofin Agency) – Eswatini Mobile launched its commercial operations in 2016. Since then, the company has been ramping up investments to be more competitive in a market dominated by MTN.

Telecommunications company Eswatini Mobile (ESM/Swazi Mobile) plans to invest 200 million lilangenis ($11.05 million) between April and December 2023 to improve its telecom network coverage in the kingdom. This was recently revealed by Jeff Penberton, chief executive officer of the mobile operator.

According to Penberton, the funds will be invested to increase network capacity and deploy 125 new base stations (2G/3G/4G) across the kingdom, with special emphasis on rural areas.

Eswatini Mobile launched its mobile services in Eswatini (then Swaziland) in July 2017, ending MTN’s monopoly in the national telecom market. The company said it has invested 1 billion lilangenis in its operations over the past six years. These funds were used to deploy 225 base stations (2G/3G/4G), covering 72% of the population.

2023 is a year of catch-up for Eswatini Mobile to reach 90 percent population coverage by the end of December. As we have more base stations, we are confident that we will get more customers as our coverage will be wider,” said M. Penberton.

Currently, ESM has 400,000 mobile subscribers out of a total of 1.52 million. Its mobile payment platform eMali has 125,000 users.

Isaac K. Kassouwi


Program Officers-UNOCHA (nationals only)

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