Zain, which operates in 22 countries across the Middle East and Africa, has invested over $420m in Ghana and will rapidly be rolling out network infrastructure across the country as part of its stated goal of becoming the world’s top 10 mobile operator by 2011.
Ghana, where mobile penetration is estimated to be just over 40%, is dominated by MTN with about five million subscribers, well ahead of its closest rival Millicom International with nearly 2.5m.
“Ghana is important to Zain and we have invested heavily in bringing the latest technology to create the best network in West Africa,” said Zain Group CEO Saad Al Barrak in a statement.
Prior to Monday’s launch, Zain Ghana undertook what it called “a highly successful” pre-registration campaign, signing up customers to its new network.
In November, Zain said it was mulling five acquisitions worth as much as $4bn in Africa and the Middle East before 2010, as the global financial crisis depresses asset prices.
Zain recently raised R4.5bn via the issue of new shares to existing shareholders.