Transforming lives in Rwanda
Launched in 2009, we are the second largest telecommunications company in Rwanda, offering GSM, 2G, 3G and 4G as well as mobile financial services under the Tigo brand. In addition, we offer Wimax and VPN services. In October 2013, Tigo Rwanda celebrated its two millionth customer - local farmer and welder, Frederic Frederick Nkizamacumu.
Connecting to the digital lifestyle
Tigo Rwanda was Millicom's first African operation to launch 3G internet, extending digital inclusion to thousands of Rwandans. As of early 2015, 4G was launched from Kigali, to be rolled out from there.
Through our partnership with the Ministry of ICT, we have provided free wi-fi on public buses in Kigali, helping 16,000 commuters (in the first half of 2014) connect with their family and friends.
Our mobile financial services, launched in 2011 under the Tigo Cash brand, bring banking to the unbanked. By October 2013, 36 per cent of our customers were active users of Tigo Cash, depositing or withdrawing money, paying utility bills and school fees via text message. Tigo Cash Rwanda has been recognised by the GSMA as one of the top five fastest-growing mobile financial services divisions in the world.
MFS in 2015 continues to be highly successful with savings products such as Tigo Sugira in Rwanda.
In 2016, Tigo Rwanda officially launched “Tigo Payment Solution for Agriculture,” providing financial and digital inclusion for over 10,000 tea farmers from plantations in the Gicumbi and Rusizi district. The initiative was realized in partnership with local area SACCOs, The Wood Foundation, Access to Finance Rwanda (AFR), and TRAC fund to create a successful integrated value chain solution for farmers’ financial processes.
Boosting the economy
Tigo is a catalyst for growth, not only through our services, but also through our direct investment in Rwanda's economy and people. 94% of our staff are locally hired, and we have invested $310 million in the country since our launch. Recently, Tigo Rwanda announced a plan to invest a further $80 million over the next five years.
Millicom actively supports initiatives to develop new digital solutions through our $1 million investment in our tech incubator 'think', in March 2014. From 150 applicants from around the world, think announced its support for four exciting new startups, whose talent and ideas have pan-Africa potential, in October 2014. These winners will receive $15,000 in seed financing, and go through structured training and coaching programmes, with mentoring from think to successfully grow their businesses.
In 2015, Tigo Rwanda became our first operation to create a Digital Changemakers Hub for the social entrepreneurs we support at our Kigali headquarters, providing a space where Digital Changemakers can work on their projects without distraction, with a reliable internet connection and with access to experts from both Tigo and our partner Reach for Change.
After a successful first year, Millicom partnered with the Reach for Change initiative to present its 2nd edition, calling on young Rwandan entrepreneurs with solid ideas that would impact the lives of children.
We are engaged in a number of projects aimed at improving the lives of Rwandans. Tigo Rwanda is working with the city of Kigali to install 52 'knowledge rooms', providing access to television and internet for local communities. Our new program to empower women trains them to be Tigo Cash agents. These women get access to loans, and hands-on financial and business literacy training, to help them expand their businesses.
In July 2015, Tigo Rwanda hosted a Child Online Protection (COP) workshop, and is now creating a national COP plan with direction of the ITU and participation of the private sector.
In addition, Millicom keeps over 12,000 city motorcyclists clean, safe and organised by providing them with weatherproof and reflective vests.