Safaricom lost 438,797 subscribers in the first three months of this year on the back of a SIM card registration directive issued by the industry regulator, the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA).
Data from the CA indicates that the total number of registered SIM cards in Kenya declined by 124,689 in the first quarter of this year, with the SIM penetration rate falling for the first time in years.
“As of March 31, 2022, the number of active mobile (SIM) subscriptions stood at 64.9 million from 65.1 million subscriptions recorded by the end of December 31, 2021, and representing a mobile penetration rate of 131.4 per cent………….The decline in SIM subscriptions is partly attributed to the ongoing SIM registration exercise during which a number of SIM cards have been deactivated.” said CA in the sector report for the first quarter.
Safaricom’s registered subscribers fell from 42.8 million in December last year to 42.4 million at the end of March, bringing the telco’s market share down marginally to 65.3 per cent from 65.8 per cent the previous year.
Airtel Kenya, on the other hand, registered an additional 303,198 subscribers while Telkom Kenya registered no change in the number of subscribers.
Finserve and Jamii Telkom added 7,072 and 17,982 subscribers respectively in the period under review.