Monday, January 14, 2008

Kenya - violence related losses

Kenya: Celtel Loses Up to Sh200m in Poll Violence

Mobile phone service provider Celtel Kenya lost between Sh150 and 200 million to the post-election violence that rocked the country recently.

The loss excludes damage to network infrastructure which is yet to be quantified. Total loss will include the cost of replacing base stations that were torched, airlifting of staff out of danger zones, and housing displaced staff in hotels.

"The actual costs that we incurred are not important. We are more focused on trying to help the peace initiatives," said Claire Ruto, head of Regulation and Corporate Affairs.

Last year, the firm invested Sh10bn in network infrastructure and boasts the largest regional coverage of any telecommunications firm, covering 85 per cent of the country.

Competitor Safaricom said it had lost Sh400 million, which it attributed to depressed earnings from the sale of scratch cards and M-Pesa services. Both firms have committed over Sh5 million to the Red Cross relief programmes taking place across the country.

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