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Sonatel contracted to manage Benin's SBIN

Africa , Benin , 30 Mar 2021

The government of the West African state of Benin has selected Sonatel (Société Nationale des Télécommunications du Sénégal) manage the Beninese digital infrastructure company, Société Béninoise d’Infrastructures Numériques (SBIN) and establish it as the country’s third telecommunications operator.

This follows a resolution reached at the end of a Council of Ministers’ meeting.

The government reiterated its intention to make SBIN operational, efficient and enable it to offer services to consumers.

A statement released by Benin’s Ministry of Digital Economy and Communication reads: “Through this decision, the State of Benin aims to be supported by a strategic partner with experience and proven skills in the management of fixed electronic communications networks and mobiles.”

Benin’s telecommunications market is largely dominated by MTN and Moov, and there has not been a new player in the market since 2017.

In 2017, the country’s industry regulator revoked the operating licenses of Bell Bénin Communications SA and Glo Mobile, reducing the number of operators in the market to two.

The agreement reached with Sonatel allows the group to manage SBIN for an initial period of five years during which SBIN will utilise the telecom operator license it was awarded on 18 March 2020 to become Benin’s third telco.

Under Sonatel, SBIN is expected to become a major GSM operator and will implement the necessary infrastructures for the rapid supply of mobile electronic communications services.

Sonatel Group is a telecommunications operator that is listed on the Regional Stock Exchange of Securities (BRVM). It operates in Senegal, Mali, Guinea, Guinea Bissau and Sierra Leone.

SBIN was established in 2018 as a public limited company arising from the incumbent public operators of fixed telephony (Benin Telecom) and mobile (Libercom).

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