Cell C has been in distress for quite some time and now there are reports that state-owned China Mobile is considering buying the embattled South African mobile operator. South African tech news site Tech Central quoted a source familiar with the negotiations who said a “deal is imminent.”
Why is This Important?
- Although’s China Mobile’s share of the domestic Chinese market is enormous, 1.6 billion connections and 460,000 employees, it almost no presence overseas.
- If China Mobile buys a controlling stake Cell C it could have a profound impact on the South African telecom market given the company’s enormous resources and its ability to outspend the competition.
- This would be the first time that Chinese companies would effectively control the entire communications ecosystem in an African country: from the data lines (China Mobile/Huawei) to the networking gear (Huawei/ZTE) to the consumer hardware (Tecno/Oppo/Infinix) to the customer relationship through Cell C (China Mobile).
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