South Africa’s Vodacom and Telkom conclude deal to share networks

Vodacom and Telkom have inked a long-term, multi-billion-rand agreement to allow Telkom to obtain roaming and facilities leasing services from Vodacom with full effect from June 2019.

The terms of the collaboration will allow Telkom subscribers to roam on Vodacom’s 2G, 3G and 4G networks. This will result in an increased in roaming experience for Telkom’s subscribers as it will in the future decrease the number of dropped calls as subscribers consistently move between networks.

The CEO of Vodacom Group, Shameel Joosub, declared, “We are extremely pleased that Telkom has selected Vodacom as its strategic partner and we look forward to delivering on this long-term and mutually beneficial agreement. By switching its roaming agreement to Vodacom, Telkom will have access to South Africa’s best network with the country’s widest population coverage, a testament to our accelerated rural coverage programme and our commitment to ensuring the sustainability of South Africa’s highly competitive telecommunications industry. Apart from the commercial benefit, this partnership between the country’s fastest-growing networks will also result in reduced network deployment costs for Telkom and cost savings for Vodacom, ultimately contributing to the reduction of data prices in South Africa.”

On the other hand, the CEO of Telkom, Sipho Maseko stated, “Seamless handover and 4G mobile technology are new additions to Telkom’s roaming agreement which will improve the customer experience on the Telkom network. The infrastructure sharing agreement will allow Telkom more efficient capital and operational expenditure. It complements Telkom’s network rollout programme as Telkom remains committed to expanding its network. The agreement enables quicker site acquisition in the medium term. I am pleased we have concluded an agreement that enables us to improve our network efficiently.”

Telkom, which also operates data services, said the agreement would allow it to use Vodacom’s towers, antennas and shelters to build out its own network.