Tag Archive | "Telecommunications"

The latest Iraq Telecommunications News – mobile phones, Iraqi Communications and more – brought to you by Iraq Business News

3G Should Bolster Telco Revenues

By John Lee.

A telecommunications analyst has said that the recent launch of 3G services in Iraq should stabilize the revenue and profit of Iraq’s mobile phone operators this year, following the difficulties caused by the war against the Islamic State (IS, ISIS, ISIL).

Omar Maher of EFG Hermes told Reuters that 2016 could see high single-digit revenue growth, adding:

Political uncertainty makes it very difficult to give an accurate or reasonable outlook for the telecom operators, but they appeared to underestimate the possibility of service disruptions from conflict in the country.”

“The conflict looks like it will continue for some time, so parts of their networks are likely to remain non-operational in 2015.”

(Source: Reuters)

(Smart phone image via Shutterstock)

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EarthLink chooses Level 3

Level 3 Communications has announced it has been selected by internet and communication solutions provider, EarthLink Telecommunications — the largest Internet Service Provider in Iraq — to provide the secure global connectivity needed to support enterprise customers from EarthLink’s Middle East location.

EarthLink’s 400-plus points of presence enable its customers to communicate in its local market. Yet the company faced the challenge of an ever-increasing demand for enhanced online security and connectivity to worldwide markets, particularly from customers in key local business sectors such as the financial services and oil industries.

To meet the needs of its enterprise customers, EarthLink turned to Level 3’s MPLS/IP VPN (Multiprotocol Label Switching/Internet Protocol Virtual Private Network) services to deliver the necessary secure, private connectivity.

As a direct result of EarthLink’s ability to provide Level 3’s services to both its wholesale and enterprise customers, the Internet provider has already signed a new contract with one of the region’s major oil and gas companies.

Sarmad Hassan, Chief Executive Officer, EarthLink Telecommunications, said:

“Working with Level 3 gives us the ability to provide customers with a one-stop shop for connectivity services. We can therefore provide them with secure, robust and reliable network connectivity on a worldwide basis, while helping them to reduce costs.”

Andrew Crouch, Regional President, EMEA, Level 3, added:

As part of our mission of connecting and protecting the networked world, we deliver the services that are needed and where they are needed in the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region.

“Working with organizations such as EarthLink, which impressed us with its local footprint, is another piece in the jigsaw in Level 3’s mission of connecting different locations across the world to serve customers.

(Source: Earthlink)

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NYNEX Extends Broadband Coverage

NYNEX satellite OHG, a leading VSAT systems operator and integrator, has grown its capacity contract with Avanti Communications to extend satellite broadband coverage across Iraq and Syria.

Following the successful deployment to Afghanistan and Libya over the last two years via Avanti’s HYLAS 2 satellite, the latest contract extension will enable NYNEX to target professional customers such as Iraq’s Oil and Gas industry, enterprise and government customers with a new outstanding satellite broadband offering.

Andreas Buxbaum, Managing Director and co-founder at NYNEX, commented:

We take great pride in providing innovative solutions using the latest in satellite technology, and we are very pleased to grow our KA-band service and to show our commitment in the Middle East region.

“Powered by Avanti’s HYLAS 2 KA-band satellite and latest iDirect VSAT technology, our new KA-band service will provide high-quality, adaptive broadband packages to meet the demands of enterprise and government customers in Iraq and Syria.

“Resellers and professional ISPs are also welcome to take advantage of our sophisticated monitoring tool, outstanding IP-engineering and VNO solutions to extend also their own product portfolio.

(Source: NYNEX)

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Court Dismisses $4.5bn Claim Against Zain

By John Lee.

An Iraqi court has reportedly rejected a $4.5-billion (5.4 trillion Iraqi dinar) lawsuit against Zain.

The case centers around Zain’s $1.2-billion acquisition of Iraqna from Egypt’s Orascom Telecom in December 2007, after the Egyptian company dropped out of the running for a long-term mobile licence.

According to Reuters, the Kuwaiti firm then merged its Iraqi unit, Atheer, with Iraqna and renamed the entity Zain Iraq.

The unnamed claimants, understood to be shareholders in rival mobile operator Korek, filed a lawsuit last year claiming that Zain’s takeover had stopped the firm buying Iraqna, causing it losses of $4.5 billion.

The court also dismissed the applicants’ right to appeal.

In a separate judgment, a court also imposed a fine of $100 million on Zain Iraq for using a range of mobile phone numbers without the telecom regulator’s permission; Zain can still appeal against this penalty.

(Source: Reuters)

(Court image via Shutterstock)

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Asiacell: Customers Up, Profits Down

By John Lee.

Qatar-based Ooredoo has reported that its Iraqi subsidiary, Asiacell, substantially grew its customers during the year, increasing by 15% to 12.3 million compared to 10.7 million at FY 2013.

In its 2014 Full Year Results, it said Asiacell faced the challenge of the growing security issue in the country during the year, in addition to the heightened levels of competition in the market.

Consequently, revenue for FY 2014 was QAR 6,298 million (FY 2013: QAR 7,071 million), a decrease of 11%; EBITDA was down by 19% to QAR 2,939 million and EBITDA margin was reduced to 47% from 51%. Net Profit stood at QAR 1,031 in 2014 (QAR 1,734 in 2013).

Asiacell continues to operate Iraq’s strongest network with the best coverage although continuity of service in some areas was affected during 2014. Strategic initiatives focused on data revenue and the B2B market.

Data initiatives implemented during the year generated strong growth in data revenue in advance of the launch of 3G. Asiacell’s B2B customer base increased significantly during the year. The company continued to focus on a number of cost efficiencies. Asiacell monitors the political situation carefully and has a range of contingency plans in place to ensure the continued operation of the business.

(Source: Ooredoo)

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Iran, Iraq to Cooperate on Telecoms

By John Lee.

Iran and Iraq have reportedly agreed to reduce mobile phone roaming charges, and to cooperate more closely on other issues relating to telecommunications.

The development follows a visit by Iraqi Minister of Communications, Hassan Kadhim Al-Rashed [Kazem Hassan Rashed], to Tehran to meet Iran’s Communications and Information Technology Minister, Mahmoud Vaezi.

Minister Vaezi said:

“Iran and Iraq have long borders, so we need to take some measures to reduce frequency mix-ups.

“On certain days, especially religious anniversaries, a large number of Iranians travel to Iraq, so we need better cooperation on such days.”

(Source: Trend)

(Smartphone image via Shutterstock)

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Asiacell Launches 3G Service

By John Lee.

Asiacell has announced the launch of its third generation (3G) mobile phone services in Iraq.

Iraq has been underserved for far too long, it’s time to bring 21st century wireless service to this important economic hub in the world,” said Faruk Mustafa Rasool (pictured), Asiacell chairman.

Asiacell has spent more than $1bn on system modernization and 3G licenses for additional spectrum, a move that marks the huge investments the company is doing for better fit to the competitive telecom market in Iraq.

The company said its network has the capability to reach 4G/LTE speeds quickly as the telecommunications infrastructure in Iraq improves.

Amer Sunaa, Asiacell Chief Executive Officer, said:

“We are very excited to launch 3G in Iraq. With the benefits of 3G, subscribers in Iraq can enjoy a faster, better mobile experience than ever before. All our customers will celebrate 3G launch with tailored incredible offers designed for each and every one.”

(Source: Asiacell)

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Roadside Bankers Profit from Extremists

This article was originally published by Niqash. Any opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.

Roadside Bankers Profit From Extremists’ Mobile Phone Shutdown in Mosul

It has been around two weeks since the extremists running Mosul decided to cut off mobile phone coverage in the city. For some locals in the city the breakdown is about more than communication – some cannot access electronic social welfare payments and others are seeing their businesses crippled.

When the city of Mosul still used to hold its famous Spring Festival – a holiday instituted by former Iraqi leader, Saddam Hussein – many locals used to gather in the more elevated Minassa area to see the festivities.

But now Mosul locals are gathering here for a completely different reason. Radwan Khaled, 53, a retired army officer, is one of them. He recalls being in about the same spot when he used to have to come here to salute Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri, one of the Iraqi army’s top military commanders during Hussein’s regime. And he is still raising his hand – except today it’s because he’s trying to get a better connection for his mobile phone, hoping to find a network here.

It has been around two weeks since the extremist group known as the Islamic State, which took control of the city in early June this year, decided that mobile telecommunications should be cut off in Mosul. And Khaled and the other people with him, waving their phones around, have come here to try and access their government-paid pensions, salaries and other social welfare payments, which have been transferred electronically via Iraq’s Qi card system.

While the shutdown in telecommunications has had a big effect on many of the estimated 1.5 million people still living in Mosul, the first to really feel the effects were those paid by Qi card, an electronic banking system. Once the Qi card has registered that money is available in the holder’s account, they can get the cash from any outlet in the area that takes the card.

Happily for Khaled, getting up high with his phone allowed him to download the amount of pension he was owed. However the actual payment process turned out to be slower than he expected – supplies of cash money were running out in the city.

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