Safaricom’s current chairman of the board, Michael Joseph, has resigned to lead the company’s Ethiopian campaign just before the launch of its new venture, according to telecom sources.

Sources disclosed, Joseph is unquestionably one of Safaricom’s top players. He was the company’s founding CEO from July 2000 to November 2010. Safaricom, which is still the market leader in Kenya, experienced massive mobile finance-driven growth at the time, making it the most successful business in East Africa.

Following Bob Collymore’s departure in July 2019, Joseph again served as acting CEO until March 2020. In August 2020, he was chosen to lead Safaricom’s board.

In a statement, Joseph said: “I want to spend more time supporting Safaricom’s investment in Ethiopia, and stepping down as chairman enables me the flexibility and freedom to execute this vital job on behalf of Safaricom.” According to growing telecoms. He plans to continue serving as a director on the board and will also focus on his role as Kenya Airways chairman.

Safaricom Ethiopia announced its plans to begin phase one of its operations in Dire Dawa in the current month and its intention is to cover 24 other cities by April 2023. Safaricom has built its own towers and transmission network including 2 data and 29 distribution centers and a 24/7 call center equipped with multiple languages.

The business has so far spent USD1 billion on investments and USD300 million on equipment and license fees. Safaricom has employed 550 employees as of today, of which 320 are Ethiopians.

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