Network sharing strategies in some Sub-Saharan countries.

University essay from KTH/Skolan för informations- och kommunikationsteknik (ICT)

Author: Henrik Eriksson; [2014]

Keywords: ;

Abstract: A trend of sharing networks between operators has been seen in different parts of the world in recent years. These agreements have enabled those actors to save costs and benefit from other positive aspects that comes with them. Mobile services are increasingly more popular in Sub-Saharan countries and are becoming affordable for an increasingly larger part of the public. The operators on the other hand are struggling with a low existing infrastructure and low revenues. Consequently it is of interest to evaluate whether network sharing would be beneficial for the operators of Sub-Saharan countries. There are multiple different business strategies that can be formed in network sharing and all have limitations in what can be implemented. Therefore one needs to identify what hindrances there are before initiating a sharing agreement. Network sharing is furthermore an issue of regulatory consideration as agreements between operators can influence the competition in a market. National regulator authorities consequently have a power to influence what possibilities there are for operators in forming sharing agreements and by that encourage the development that they deem as positive. In this paper some network sharing strategies are evaluated in their potential if implemented in two Sub-Saharan countries; Nigeria and Kenya. The assessment of the sharing strategies is made with a S.W.O.T analysis of each approach, as well as by taking experiences from Norway which here is considered as a bench-mark for the development in mobile communication technology. Some examples of passive sharing is currently seen in the two countries, but further cost savings are needed. The Nigerian and Kenyan MNOs need to consider active sharing strategies to generate those cost savings. MORAN sharing is here the recommended approach for both countries in implementing an active sharing strategy, but the regulators need to allow sharing of RNC’s for it to be implementable. If additional spectrum is allocated to mobile communication the regulators in both countries should consider national roaming and MVNOs as tools for increasing competition and to lower the SMP of dominant actors.

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