Bharti Airtel CEO and Joint MD Manoj Kohli

Bharti Airtel expects its revenue from African operations to top USD5 billion by 2013.

The company invested over USD10 billion in taking over Zain’s African operations last year, and has promised to invest heavily in improving the infrastructure of its new acquisitions.

Its latest investment is in Rwanda, where it has been granted a 2G and 3G operating licence, and aims to invest USD100 million in infrastructure over the next three years.

Bharti Airtel CEO and Joint MD Manoj Kohli said the company was satisfied with the performance of its new acquisitions and was on track to see earnings of USD5 billion by May 2013.

Acknowledging that the company faces stiff competition on the continent, Kohli said it has plans to bring down operating costs in several ways, including building its own tower company.  

He noted that Africa is also under-penetrated, with penetration as low as 25 – 30% in some areas, presenting great opportunities.

He says the company sees 3G, Value Added Services for a young market and the growing popularity of its brand as reasons for optimism in Africa.

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