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Econet South Africa’s Virtual Operation Sells 500,000 Lines


Econet Wireless ZimbabweWe just received a press release from Econet with information that Econet Wireless South Africa has sold more than half a million SIM packs over the last 12 months. Econet is a Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) in South Africa where it piggybacks on Cell C infrastructure.

An MVNO is an operator that doesn’t own any network infrastructure but uses an existing operator’s network to deliver mobile telecommunication services to subscribers.

Primarily meant for Zimbabweans living in South Africa, Econet says the service has been such a huge success it’s extending it to Africans living in South Africa from other countries, such as Lesotho, Botswana, Zambia, and Mozambique.


An Econet spokesperson quoted in the release predicts that subscribers would exceed the 1 million mark in just a few months from now, effectively consolidating Econet’s position as one of the key players in the SA mobile market.

Econet’s fast growth in South Africa reflects similar exponential growth it has experienced in Zimbabwe over the last 2 years. The South African mobile telecoms market is dominated by giants Vodacom and MTN who account for most of the 50 plus million active subscribers.

Back home in Zimbabwe, Econet is the leading mobile operator with more than 4 million subscribers. This makes up for more than 65% of the Zim mobile market.

Econet launched a similar MVNO setup in the United Kingdom recently.

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