Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Telenor Advocates Telcos’ Consolidation in Pakistan

Terming low ARPU as the main cause for not getting high returns and sizeable growth, Jon Eddy Abdullah, Telenor Pakistan’s Chief Executive, urged telecom companies in Pakistan merging/acquiring, even before the launch of 3G in the country.
In an interview with Financial Times, Telenor Pakistan’s chief said that five operators in one market are too many; he wished 3 telecom companies operating at most, just like in many other global market.
Jon Eddy didn’t comment when asked if Telenor’s can be part of any speculation consolidation, however, he did mention that all operators may talk to each other for any possible merger/acquisition.
In response to a question on third generation technology, Mr. Abdullah said the government would need to offer incentives to existing operators for moving towards 3G.
Telenor has invested $2bn in Pakistan since it arrived, but Mr Abdullah said a move to 3G needed to be thought through. “The question comes to basics. We spent $290m on a 2G licence in 2004. We are years away from recouping that investment.”
Telenor had entered into Pakistani market exactly 5 years ago.

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