Vodacom Group is negotiating an SA wireless network-sharing deal with fixed-line operator Telkom as a replacement for former partner Cell C, say people familiar with the matter. The unit of Vodafone Group lost about R1bn ($70.7m) of annual revenue when Cell C jumped ship to rival MTN Group earlier in 2018, said the people, who asked not to be identified as the talks are not public. Bringing in Telkom, SA’s fourth-largest mobile-phone company, would make up some of the shortfall, they said. Vodacom and Telkom declined to comment.

Vodacom and MTN are the country’s two largest mobile-phone carriers, and have about 43 million and 30 million customers, respectively. That is more than the total population, meaning that some people have more than one wireless contract. To squeeze extra revenue, both companies are seeking to add services or partnerships — taking advantage of demand for their 4G spectrum from smaller rivals. For its part, Telkom, almost 40% owned by the government, is ...

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