Airtel, has said it will roll out 5G services for rural dwellers.
The telecom company won the second 5G auction in December 2022 after Standard Network & Connections Limited failed to pay the required “intention to bid deposit.”
Airtel paid the reserve price of $273.6m for the new 5G spectrum license with a tenure of 10 years.
The telecom said in a regulatory filing on Monday that the Group has purchased 100 MHz of spectrum in the 3500MHz band and 2x5MHz of 2600MHz from the NCC for a gross consideration of $316.7m, payable in local currency.
But the Group targets an aggressive penetration of the 5G to rural communities when it finally rollout the service.
“The acquisition of 5G spectrum will underpin our growth strategy by enabling the launch of higher speed connectivity to enhance customer service and accelerate digitalisation for consumers, enterprises and the public sector” Airtel said.
Airtel controls 57.38 million subscribers or 27.16 per cent of Nigeria’s telecom market, according to industry data from the NCC.
Segun Ogunsanya, CEO of Airtel Africa believed that 5G is critical to its market penetration particularly among rural communities.
Ogunsanya said, “Nigeria is a market with enormous potential for future growth in mobile services. Investment in new technologies and local infrastructure to enable this growth is a strategic priority for the Group and will ensure we are able to provide reliable and affordable services to local communities across the country.
“5G is critical to these ambitions, and we look forward to launching new services to drive further digitalisation across the country, facilitate economic progress and transform lives across Nigeria.”