Indian telco Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) is reportedly mulling a bid to run the networks and operations of Ethiopian state-owned monopoly Ethiopian Telecommunications Company (ETC) on a revenue sharing basis, according to the Economic Times.
A successful bid would also likely see BSNL be given a fixed fee for management on top of the funds generated under the revenue sharing agreement. 'BSNL is on the lookout for business opportunities in the African market. We are, at present, keeping all the options open, including taking over operation and maintenance and management control of a telecom company. As a part of the ongoing overseas business activities, we feel that ETC can be one of the operations,' said Kuldeep Goyal, chairman and managing director of BSNL.
It is understood that BSNL's interest in the African operator follows an open request from the Ethiopian government aimed at boosting IT and telecoms services in the country.
Whilst other companies from the Middle East and Africa region are also expected to confirm their interest in ETC in the short term, no other Indian operators have been mentioned with reference to a possible deal. According to sources quoted by the report, BSNL representatives are expected to visit Ethiopia next week to meet with ETC officials.