Business Times

Mobitel reached 3.8 million subscribers by Nov. 2010

By Bandula Sirimanna

Sri Lanka Telecom Mobitel, the national mobile service provider subscriber base increased over the past five years to 3.8 million in November 2010 from 393,000 in November 2005. The Upahara postpaid package designed for greater inclusivity of the state sector, clergy and pensioners became a huge success with over 500,000 new additions in less than three months, Suren J. Amarasekera, CEO of Mobitel, said.

Revenue has also grown over 6-fold during the past five years, he said in an interview with the Business Times with this achievement being possible due to a carefully executed strategy based on value innovation and brand building through service excellence.

With the aim of providing diverse customer needs in modern technology era, Mobitel having launched the first 3.5G HSPA network in South Asia, three years ago in 2007 announced that it will further expand the network to build capacities in infrastructure and to investing for the future.

Investments committed to date in its super 3.5G/2.5G networks and service offering totals over US$ 400 million. He noted that the company’s next phase of expansion will eventually reach a total around 3000 base stations with an emphasis in covering the North and East of Sri Lanka. “In pursuit of its vision to lead Sri Lanka towards an infocomm and knowledge rich society, the company is set to advance its engine with latest Next Generation Net work (NGN) in order to eventually realize 'Broadband for All’. We are proud to say that Sri Lanka is on par with other developed countries in the world in terms of embracing of latest ICT technologies," he added.

Mr. Amarasekera explained Mobitel’s vision of being a platform where information can be accessed, created, used and shared among communities to build an information and knowledge rich society which is capable of elevating the nation to greater heights. He noted that this can be achieved by utilizing the best resources and expert knowledge available both locally and internationally. He asserted that the company is recognized in Sri Lanka and the region not only for its consumer pull but also for its cutting edge technology. Towards making its basic products affordable to all, the company introduced its value innovated SMART prepaid service that became an instant success.

Mr. Amarasekera, expressing his views on the company’s ‘I am Sri Lanka’ campaign, emphasized, “Don’t mistake Sri Lanka for the buildings, roads, forests, trees and other physical infrastructure that we see - Sri Lanka really is you and I. It is you and I who can make a difference between the past and future, and build a greater nation. Today, we may be small, but tomorrow our nation can and will be a great one. That responsibility however lies with each one of us. It is you and I that make this nation great.” He has further expressed that Mobitel’s efforts on promoting mobile broadband are aimed at bridging the digital divide and thereby paving the way for our nation to achieve exponential growth through a knowledge economy.

Carefully crafted strategies along appropriate initiatives have strongly contributed to the growing value of Mobitel Brand. Mobitel displayed exemplary service performance as the SLIM Brand Excellence 2010 awarded the National Mobile Service Provider for its recognition as a brand journeying beyond contemporary business practices. At the recently concluded SLIM Awards ceremony held at Waters Edge, Mobitel was awarded Gold for Service Brand of the Year and Mobitel’s M3 brand claimed gold for Best New Entrant of the Year.

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