Senegal - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Market Insights and Statistics
MNOs develop mobile wallet platforms
This report provides a comprehensive overview of trends and developments in Senegal's telecommunications market.
Subjects covered include:
Key statistics; Market and industry overviews; The impact of the global economic crisis; Government policies affecting the telecoms industry; Market liberalisation and regulatory environment; Major players (fixed, mobile and broadband); Telecoms operators privatisation, acquisitions, new licences; Consolidation in the mobile sector; Infrastructure development; Mobile voice and data markets, including 3G; Average Revenue per User; Internet and broadband development and growth; Broadband and mobile data services and pricing trends; Convergence (voice/data, fixed/wireless/mobile); The emergence of m-payment and m-banking services.
Senegal continues to benefit from solid economic development, with GDP estimated to have grown 4.5% in 2014. This has translated into consistent growth in the telecom market. The dominant player Sonatel, majority-owned by France Telecom and branded as Orange, has effective competition from a small number of operators, particularly in the mobile services sector where Tigo Senegal and Espresso have a 24% and 20% market share, respectively.
Competition in the fixed-line sector was introduced when Sudan's Sudatel launched services as the second national operator (SNO) in 2009. Operating as Expresso, fully owned by Expresso Telecom (in which Sudatel holds a 75% stake), the company launched mobile services in the same year. The new entrant initially chose CDMA2000 technology to serve both market segments but switched to GSM technology in 2010, including 3G/HSPA mobile broadband.
The licensing of new operators has not always been transparent in Senegal, with the licences of both Sentel and Sudatel were awarded under controversial circumstances. Sentel settled a four-year licence dispute with the government in August 2012.
The mobile market has prospered, helped in part by poor fixed-line infrastructure in some rural areas. Mobile penetration reached about 111% by early 2015. A range of value-added services is available to subscribers, including mobile broadband access, which has become by far the dominant internet platform, accounting for about 93% of all internet accesses.
Development of the internet market until 2007 was hampered by Sonatel's monopolistic pricing of bandwidth on the only high-capacity international submarine fibre optic cable serving the country. Despite this, broadband services in Senegal are relatively advanced, and a range of IP-based services including broadband TV (IPTV) and converged triple-play services are offered. Sonatel has progressively reduced its prices following the arrival of several competing international fibre optic submarine cables.
Work of the Diamniadio Valley digital city expected to start by mid-2015; Tigo launches commercial LTE services, develops Mobile Wallet platform, expands HSPA+ network; Rapid Communications sets up mobile remittance service in Senegal; mobile subscriber base reaches 14.27 million; MNP comes into force; regulator sets up new body to monitor QoS of telecom services; mobile internet accounting for 93% of all internet connections; competition in international fibre bandwidth boosts broadband market; mobile licence dispute settled after four years; Sonatel signs agreement to provide free 1Mb/s internet services to schools, announces plans to sell its domestic 1,600 mobile tower portfolio; report update includes the regulator's market data to September 2014, operator data to Q4 2014, recent market developments.
Estimated market penetration rates in Senegal's telecoms sector end-2014 Market | Penetration rate Mobile | 117% Fixed | 2.5% Internet | 23% (Source: BuddeComm based on various sources)