GPE appoints Anwar Soussa as MD

Anwar Soussa - Vodacom 16.9.jpg

The Global Partnership for Ethiopia (GPE) has appointed Anwar Soussa as the managing director (MD) of the operating company in Ethiopia.

As a special-purpose acquisition company (SPAC), GPE was formed to operate telecom services in Ethiopia and was awarded the licence to do so in May 2021.

Safaricom is the biggest shareholder in the company with a 55.7% share, followed by Sumitomo Corporation which holds 27.2%, CDC Group which holds 10.9% and Vodacom which has a 6.2% stake.

Effective as of 1st July 2021, Soussa will report to the board of GPE as well as Safaricom’s CEO, Peter Ndegwa.

Soussa currently served as managing director of Vodacom DRC and the chairperson of Vodacash (M-PESA), Vodafone’s African mobile money service, a role he has held since 2017.

During his tenure, Soussa has cemented Vodacom DRC as the largest Vodacom operation outside of South Africa by driving major strides in operational performance, crossing the $500 million in service revenue in 2020.

As MD of the GPE Soussa will lead the Ethiopian operating company on behalf of the GPE consortium.

Specifically, he will be responsible for executing the consortium’s vision of bringing about transformational economic and social changes in Ethiopia and to positively enhance the lives of its over 112 million population. To achieve this Soussa will develop strategies and plans to ensure the delivery of quality and affordable mobile and internet connectivity for Ethiopians.

Prior to joining Vodacom, Soussa served as the chief executive officer of Airtel in Uganda and Chad. He has also worked in various senior leadership capacities at MTN and Digicel, to name a few.

In related news, March saw Safaricom begin trials of 5G in Nairobi, Kisumu, Kisii and Kakamega. The aim of the trials is to establish if customers can enjoy speeds of up to 700Mbps, with plans to offer than 1,000Mbps in coming months. The company has also revealed plans to later increase 5G internet speeds beyond 1,000Mbps in later stages of the trial.