News From Telecom World

BTCL earning drops 35pc

Posted on: September 18, 2008

The officials of newly constituted BTCL, the state owned landline operator, said its earnings dropped by 35 percent to Tk35crore in the second month of operation.

BTCL (Bangladesh Telecommunications Limited), formerly BTTB, made its debut as a separate entity in July 2008.

The BTCL’s earnings stood at Tk25crore on July 20, down from Tk54 crore in June. Between July 21 and August 20, BTCL’s earnings settled at Tk35crore, showing a 35 percent decrease in earnings as compared to Tk54 crore in June.

The company officials said mainly lower tariff causes the earnings to go down.

“Initially, the earning looks very dismal. But in the long run, BTCL’s earnings will rise according to its plan,” said Ashraful Alim, managing director of BTCL, yesterday (17 Sept ‘08) as he discussed with journalists on the issue in Dhaka.

Alim said since launching BTCL added around 13,000 new customers to its network to add up to 8.48lakh customers in total.

The company in July introduced the lowest tariff in the market, which ultimately defeated private landline operators in terms of minimum price offer. The BTCL offers Tk0.10 per minute in off peak and Tk0.15 per minute in peak hours, whereas minimum tariff offered by private landline operators is Tk0.25.

“We are planning to rearrange our network structure to attract more customers,” Alim said, adding that around 200 exchanges that are incurring Tk70, 000 in losses per month have been detected.

As per the BTCL plan, these exchanges could be relocated to the high-density areas, he said.

Among 12 landline operators, BTCL holds the leading position in the market in terms of their customer base, followed by RankTel’s 1.48 lakh and Dhaka Phone’s 0.54lakh customers.

During its last few years, the BTTB had been losing its customers’ confidence due to poor services and hidden charges demanded by the board’s officials for new phone connection.

Last year, a significant number of customers of BTTB surrendered their connections due to poor services.

” It is a challenge to retain the existing customers first,” said Alim, adding that BTCL will develop its services in a way so as to get new customers rather than losing them.

Source: Daily Star

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