Ethio telecom plans to generate about 70 billion Birr income in the newly started budget year 2021/22, yet the number could decrease to 66.2 billion birr if certain sensitive issues including the northern region crises are not solved in a short period of time. Moreover, if the telecom service interruption continues due to the security issues, this could make Ethio telecom lose up to 5.1 billion birr annual in revenue.
Briefing the media on August 19, 2021, Ethio telecom CEO Firehiwot Tamiru said that new technologies and additional features will be implemented to enhance customer experience, quality and accessibility of services to achieve the set strategic plan.
“By expanding its local and international telecom service packages, Ethio telecom will work to intensively meet its plan by strengthening telecom infrastructure, service quality, flexibility and accessibility,” said the CEO. Through the last three years with regards to the implementation of its three year BRIDGE growth strategy, Ethio telecom has commenced to realize its aspiration to become a preferred telecom operator among customers and partners.
Ethio telecom has also planned to increase its total subscribers by 14% to 64 million customers. A further breakdown of their target includes: Mobile Voice subscribers by 13% to 61.37 M, Data and Internet users by 16.2% to 28.5M, Fixed broadband subscribers by 48% to 554K. This is expected to bring telecom’s penetration to 61%.
By engaging in new business streams and shifting revenue source from traditional to value-added services and by offering more than 100 new and revamped local and international products & services, Ethio Telecom targets to generate 70 billion birr in revenue in the 2021/22 budget year. The target is 24 percent greater than the revenue Ethio telecom had generated in 2020/21 budget year which was 56.5 billion. It also targets to generate 178 million dollars in foreign currency which is 11.6 million dollars or 7 percent greater than the foreign currency generated in the 2020/21 budget year, which was 166.5 million USD.
In particular, Ethio-Telecom has been working hard to become a competent and preferred telecom service provider in the fast and dynamic telecom market to meet the growing demand for telecom services. By building a people oriented company with a competitive strategy, Ethio telecom will work to increase its capacity in the sector and will have a capacity to handle 3.8 million new customers. Moreover, 984 sites will be beneficiaries of 4G network while 490 new mobile stations will be built, with further 2500 2G sites being upgraded to 3G in the process.
“On the other hand, infrastructure sharing, interconnections, wholesale roaming and collocations will make up the foregone revenue due to competition. Conflicts in some parts of the country, telecom fraud, inflation and gaps in foreign currency are the main challenges the company faces” highlighted the CEO.
With regards to the Northern region crisis, the telecommunication firm hopes that the issue will be resolved within a short period of time. In case of persistence, the targeted subscribers and revenue will be affected and this has been taken into account in the strategy.
Also infrastructure vandalism as earlier stated is one of the biggest challenges, and as the CEO explained even if Ethio telecom has started to talk with the new operators on infrastructure, unless all the stakeholders make major interventions to minimize infrastructure vandalism, Ethio telecom will not be obliged to share its infrastructure since it will cost the firm the fulfillment of its agreement to provide 99.99 percent availability on infrastructure.
The CEO stated that about 71 new 4G LTE advanced network infrastructures would be introduced to improve network availability as the data traffic growth and demand from customers for the 4G/LTE have been increasing.
In the budget year, the company will work to prioritize digitalization and simplification on its services whilst also empowering customers to use Ethio Telecom as the first choice. Furthermore the telecommunication’s firm aims to enhance its after sales services loyalty program in accordance with its three-year growth plan.
Regarding its loan repayment, “Finance and loan repayment is vital for the success of any business, to this end, in the last three years 936.2 million dollar or 32.47 billion birr has been repaid,” said the CEO. The Total Issued Promissory Notes (NGN + TEP) accounted for 2.34 billion USD. Of this, USD 1.56 billion accounted for the total paid loan which was 67% of the total while the remainder of 781 million USD was the remaining amount which is to be settled until 2029.