Categorized | Business, National News

Looming Competition Forces BTC To Eye New Markets–BTC looks to expand reach to Haiti

The Bahamas Telecommunication’s Company (BTC) Chief Executive Officer Leon Williams admitted that the telecommunications giant is looking to extend its services outside of The Bahamas in an effort to survive in a market that will continue to grow and become more competitive.

He added that he is accused of attempting to push the panic button on BTC’S life support; however Mr. Williams assures that he is only stating the reality as it relates to the future of BTC.

“The challenge with BTC is that it’s a dominant monopoly carrier for cellular services in The Bahamas, if you step back a little bit we have always been in competition for the internet services, Cable Bahamas launched internet services long before, so we were trying to play catch up, Indigo which is acquired by Cable Bahamas actually is competing with us so were being competitive in the fix line, were being competitive in data and in internet services,” he said.

“Cable Bahamas has television that we don’t have and so as I’ve stated earlier if they were to get a mobile license they would get four plays we would have tri-play so BTC certainly has some challenges in front of it. The market in The Bahamas is 350,000 people, there will be a new player in the market come 2015, and there will be a third player in the market come 2016. The pie is just so much, all you’re doing is dicing the pie into smaller quarters, BTC has the grow the market outside of The Bahamas and grow the market somewhere else for top line revenue or were dead in the water.”

Mr. Williams pointed to the success story of Digicel and its expansion efforts to cover the Caribbean, in particular the island of Haiti.

According to Mr. Williams, BTC started to set up its business on the island of Haiti but failed to capitalized on the opportunity.

“We still have the cable, it is working, it is unutilized and certainly BTC will like to go back into Haiti to see what the possibilities are, since we didn’t take the opportunity Digicel went in and as you heard the President of Haiti state the amount of money that their making, Digicel now has 3.5 million customers in Haiti, so they’ve got almost three times and I don’t have to tell you that, Haiti is Digicel’s number one money earner. Compared to what they take out of Haiti to BTC’s total package is in the Bahamas it’s almost two to three times as much.”

Mr. Williams stressed further that BTC would have to do something to win the market share, predicting that a new competition could possibly take 33 per cent of its local customers, representing 100,000 individuals.

Moving forward, Mr. Williams said the company intends to visit Haiti for a meeting with officials to undergo the process of applying for a license to provide services on that island.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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