Yozma Time Turns (YTT), the new mobile operator in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), was launched last week in the capital Kinshasa.
YTT becomes the country’s sixth mobile operator alongside Vodacom, Tigo, Airtel, Africell and Orange.
It was not a surprising move given the fact that a study conducted in 2012 by the Congolese research company Target SARL found that the DRC remains a relatively untapped market, where countless investment opportunities still exist in the cellphone industry.
Mobile penetration in the DRC currently stands at 25%, according to the latest statistics published by the ministry of posts, telecoms and ICTs.
And a plethora of political and business figures who attended the launch of YTT last week wished the new kid on the block well, hoping that it will succeed where others have failed.
YTT managing director Beston Tshinsele told the audience that YTT will be campaigning everywhere, and strive to be in places other networks have never been before.
“We’ll go everywhere, where there is a need to communicate and where there is money,” he said defiantly.
“We are ready to have a go at this market with our 3G technology. We have understood the market, we know the purchasing power of the average Congolese and we will adapt our prices accordingly,” Tshinsele said.
If YTT has indeed a perfect understanding of the Congolese mobile market, then it should be aware of the country’s ‘harsh’ law that requests mobile operators to abide by the tariffs set by the regulator, ARPTC, to avoid falling out with the government.
Africell, which sided with the people and rebelled against what many observers describe as an ‘unfair’ law, has since been forced out of the interconnection highway by the regulator and fellow operators Vodacom, Tigo, Orange and Airtel.
Tshinsele said: “There is no need to come up with prices that nobody wants. We will see what we can do, but our tariffs will be affordable.”