VIVA reports widest 4G network coverage

Gulf Daily News Sunday, 1st February 2015
Zain Bahrain registers
$10.9 million net profit
MANAMA: Zain Bahrain generated revenues of BD71.8 million
($190.5m) in 2014, a decrease of
8.1 per cent on the previous year’s
BD78.1m ($207.1m).
EBITDA for the period reached
BD27m and BD29.3m with percentage
change of 7.8pc, reflecting a healthy
margin of 36.9pc.
Net income amounted to BD4.1m
($10.9m) in 2014, a decrease of 24pc on
the previous year of BD5.4m, reflecting
earnings per share of 13 fils for the 12
months ending on December 31, compared with 17 fils per share in 2013.
Zain Bahrain witnessed customer growth of 2.1pc in 2014 to serve
788,000 customers as at December 31.
For the fourth quarter of 2014,
Zain Bahrain recorded revenues of
BD17.8m, down 11.1pc from 2013
where revenues were at BD18 million.
EBITDA for the quarter reached
BD6.9m from BD7.8m in 2013 (11.5pc
change), reflecting a strong margin
of 38.4pc. Net income for the quarter reached BD1.2m compared with
BD1.6m during the same period in
2013 (25pc change), reflecting a 14pc
decrease year on year.
Shaikh Ahmed bin Ali Al Khalifa said.
Zain Bahrain completed an initial
“The environment for telecom in
public offering (IPO) of 15pc of its Bahrain and the region was challenging
share capital on September 30, which during the year, though Zain Bahrain
saw 48m ordinary shares offered at 190 successfully leveraged many of its strafils per share.
tegic assets in order to record
It listed on the Bahrain
a reasonable performance
Stock Exchange on December
investing a huge $100m
4 with the share price trading
in building a new 4G LTE
at 200 fils as at December 31.
nationwide network.”
Net income for the year
“The board of directors
was impacted by a number
will recommend to the annuof one-off expenses associal general assembly a cash
ated with the IPO, includdividend of 5pc at par equaling an exceptional penalty of
ling 5 fils per share totalling
BD1.8m subject to regulatoIt completed a $100m
ry approvals,” the chairman
investment during 2014, n Shaikh Ahmed added.
completely revamping its
Shareholders’ equity stood
state-of-the-art 4G LTE mobile net- at BD59.3m as at December 31.
work, which contributed to a steady
“Despite the competitive telecom
growth in data-related revenues by 6pc landscape and a highly penetrated maryear on year.
ket in Bahrain, we have undertaken
“We attained significant achieve- many transformational initiatives to
ments during 2014, one of which was drive operational efficiency and innovalisting on the Bahrain Stock Exchange, tion across our operation. Our new 4G
from where we believe we can continue LTE nationwide network will allow us
to drive value for our widened base of to fully exploit the growth opportunities
shareholders,” Zain Bahrain chairman in mobile broadband, building on our
successes in driving voice and data revenues forward,” Zain Bahrain general
manager Mohammed Zainalabedin said.
“We are transforming the operation
to align with Zain Group’s strategy of
becoming an integrated digital telecom
operator, building on our strong brand,
fostering our existing customer base,
and developing new business opportunities in the area of enterprise services,”
he said.
The operator focused its efforts on
strengthening its customer care efforts
in 2014 by revamping 22 retail shops
across the kingdom, supported by a
strong team of sales and customer care
representatives. The ‘enhanced shops’
represented an improved retail experience and provided a one-stop destination for customers offering education,
support and hands-on demonstrations
of products and services along with
self-service machines and a dedicated
SIGNATURE team member along with
a technical support area. A key element
introduced is the customer management system, which allows customers
to schedule an appointment at any Zain
Russian GDP
seen falling
3pc this year
MOSCOW: Russia’s economy ministry yesterday said
it expected gross domestic
product to fall three per cent
this year, more optimistic than
many analysts’ forecasts of a
4-5pc drop.
The economy has been hit by a
sharp fall in oil prices and sanctions imposed on Moscow for its
role in the Ukraine crisis, leaving
Russia facing its first year of
recession since 2009 in the wake
of the global financial crisis.
Economy Minister Alexei
Ulyukayev said the 3pc was
based on an oil price forecast of
$50 per barrel, which he called
a “conservative” figure compared with more upbeat consensus forecasts, Interfax reported.
Despite that the ministry’s
economic growth forecast was
more optimistic than analysts
polled in late January who saw
the Russian economy falling by
4.2pc this year.
Moody’s rating agency said
earlier that the GDP fall may
by as much as 5.5pc. Analysts
at Danske in Copenhagen said
in a recent note GDP may contract by 8pc.
The ministry’s $50 per barrel
oil price forecast was half of
the $100 per barrel the ministry
envisioned last summer in its
economic scenario for this year.
Inflation, according to
Ulyukayev, would not ease this
year and would hit 12pc by the
end of 2015, compared with
11.4pc in 2014.
n Industry and Commerce Minister Zayed Al Zayani met representatives of GOIC and discussed ways to develop knowledgebased industris and find opportunities for investment in this sector. The ministry is working on an integrated study to develop
this sector. The working group on this study consists of experts from GOIC and the World Bank as well as ministry officials.
They will collect and analyse information on key emerging technologies in the GCC region with particular reference to
metals, especially aluminium, water treatment, plastics and chemicals, electronics and semiconductors, pharmaceuticals and
biotechnology and other areas.
VIVA reports widest 4G network coverage
MANAMA: VIVA Bahrain reported the
widest 4G network coverage and ranked
top on Quality of Service, according to
official independent reports issued by
the Telecommunications Regulatory
Authority (TRA) at the end of last year.
Based on the findings, VIVA’s 4G network has the widest coverage in Bahrain
reaching 99.7 per cent of the population.
Additional key indicators were evaluated under the Quality of Services report
which presents a performance snapshot
of voice, data, short messages services (SMS) and video streaming services.
VIVA ranked top in voice quality of service, scoring 97.4pc success rate in setting
up and holding a call, it showcased 100pc
data coverage on its 4G network, and
100pc of successful transfers at an average
speed of 35 Mbps.
VIVA’s 4G network also recorded a
98pc success rate of setting up and holding
a video stream for two minutes.
“Based on the tests conducted by the
TRA, all three operators are performing well which is further proof of the
healthy level of competition in Bahrain,”
VIVA Bahrain chief executive Ulaiyan Al
Wetaid said.
“We are pleased with VIVA’s positive performance positioning our 4G network with the widest coverage in Bahrain.
VIVA’s technological advancements and
investments in infrastructure have ensured
that we meet the communication needs of
our customers which demand cutting-edge
services and the best customer experience.”
The assessment was conducted by an
independent agency to ensure a reliable,
fair and non-discriminatory audit of all
three networks – Batelco, VIVA and Zain
– and allow consumers to make choice
based on quantitative and qualitative data.
The detailed audit of mobile service
providers on various parameters for
mobile telephony and broadband services
included network availability, call drop
rate and billing. The reports evaluated key
quality of service indicators of the operators’ mobile networks including network
coverage and quality of services available.
anaging a business is
essentially a simple
process – ask any
successful owner of a small
merchant business.
At the root of their business
are a few products and services that serve as their core
focus. This is generally supplemented by a rudimentary
form of bookkeeping and
minor promotional activities
that usually involve leaflet
distribution, inexpensive advertisements in local newspapers, or more importantly,
by word of mouth.
However, we in the ‘corporate world’, in our pursuit to
‘glamourise’ and ‘differentiate’, complicate business
management. We are caught
up in an ‘always-busy’ syndrome of high activity levels
that do not always translate
to value.
For instance look back at your
previous week and attempt
to identify how many meetings, conferences, emails
and reports were actually
beneficial for the success of
the business.
The small merchant, struggling for survival in a competitive environment (and
perhaps also struggling to
consistently put food on the
table), will never do anything
that he/she cannot see the
cash flow for.
Consider certain aspects of
the model your business is
founded upon, for example
a specific process adopted
within your organisation. Can
you, in laymen terms, explain
what it is and how it contributes to the value proposition
you offer your customers? Or
are you one of those people
who find it difficult to explain
what exactly their job is and
what exactly their business
The main issue in complicating business management
is that we tend to get lost
in its complexity. It’s even
more alarming that we adopt
a belief that if a solution is
very simple, it cannot be any
good. As a result, we are
‘blind’ to absolutely simple
ways to manage a challenge.
Complexity can often be
quite costly, especially if
the problem at hand is quite
simple. Take for instance the
automation of a certain business process. When it can
be done quite cheaply and
easily by relying on existing
software already in use,
there is no need to purchase
over-the-top ‘productivity
enhancing’ software suites
that only end up costing a
fortune in both money and
time spent for training and
We need to begin simplifying
our complex business management processes and in
doing so we need to start
asking the very basic questions that even a child would
Mr Cader is the chief
executive of MTI Consulting