So today Safaricom announced it full year results today. Apparently  Safaricom had turnover up 19.1% to Sh83.96b, subscribers up 18.2% to 15.79m ; dividend up 100% to Sh8b at 20cents a share and a profit of over sh20b. But along with that announcement that the Information PS  Ndemo annouces that the THE KENYA INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATIONS (FAIR COMPETITION AND EQUALITY OF TREATMENT) REGULATIONS, 2010 been suspended to be reviewed! Nkt!!

Now I’m sure that most of you(Kenyans that is) have heard if not read about the aforementioned regulations. They mostly protect the smaller operators from bullying from the dominant player(Safaricom). It mostly(actually only, I think) deals with interconnection rates. So that means when Safaricom decides to raise interconnection rates they have to prove that they’re doing it because their costs to do so have gone up. It also states that “A licensee shall maintain accounting separation techniques to be focused on the separation of revenues, costs and capital employed into categories in order to ensure that there is no discrimination between internal and external pricing in all services provided by the licensee.”(Taken verbatim from the regulations)

I really don’t see that as price control, do you? Even if it is it protects the consumer. And the fact that it’s only Safaricom complaining should tell you the other players have no problem with them. In fact some of them even praised the regulation! So why exactly are they being suspended? After all CCK is  supposed to look at all players as equal but hey Safaricom hates them so lets be their bitch and do exactly what they say!

Lets not forget that Safaricom is generally a crappy network with poor service(try call customer care and see when you get connected). I don’t even know why Kenyan’s seem hooked to that network! Most expensive data, voice and SMS charges in the country. Though I have to admit Safaricom does do innovation very well, M-pesa, 3G and now M-kesho. But I fear that Safaricom is becoming what people “Too big too fail”.
 So what brought on this short rant? Larry Madowo tweeted that Micheal Joseph(CEO Safcom) had asked him not to call over sh20 billion super-profits! Good Lord! That’s just bullshit! None of their competitor can even claim to make half(more likely quarter) of that profit AND very few companies in the region, East Africa not just Kenya, even come close. Anyway I just had to get that off my chest. I’m not an expert, businessman or even a business student. I’m just someone with an opinion and this platform to express it. What do you think? Comments are welcome. Before I go can someone tell me if I can be sued for this? Peace!

Written by Sidney Ochieng

Child at heart and mind. Feminist. Story teller. Fledgling data scientist. Your future boss

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