Visafone workers inherited by MTN as a result of the acquisition of the code division multiple access (CDMA) operator are to be retained so they have the requisite skills and intelligence for engaging the new 4G or long term evolution (LTE) technology.
Sector analysts say the acquisition is expected to provide the MTN a robust voice and data platform of Visafone and cater for booming internet population of the country.
It was gathered that selected workers of Visafone are likely to commence the retraining immediately ahead of the launch of the new data service.
MTN Executive, Ms. Amina Oyagbola, said the acquisition which seeks to leverage resources for service enhancement is also reflective of the telco’s concerted efforts to deepen the growth and roll out of broadband services across the country currently under 10 per cent to the targeted 30 per cent by 2018 of the National Broadband Plan (NBP) of the Federal Government. It will also help to realise other targets of the plan.
Oyagbola said: “We are committed to exploring avenues for meeting our customers’ increasing data needs in line with our vision ‘to lead the delivery of a bold new digital world to our customers’.
As we work to maximise our data capabilities towards achieving broadband of international quality, our objective is to ensure that Nigerians experience a boost in the quality of broadband internet services translating to the much needed enhanced data speeds and value to enhance personal and business productivity.
“The acquisition of Visafone highlights MTN’s commitment to Nigeria. More capacity will facilitate enhanced product/service offerings and experience in the data space to the delight of our valued customers. Voice is still King. However, data is becoming increasingly important in our everyday lives and our energies are focused on enhancing data and internet services to the benefit of our customers and the country at large.”
The 4G LTE technology is particularly good for the country and economy because it will create conducive platform for enhanced product/service innovation which will ultimately lead to the creation of new jobs, the analysts added.
Telecoms industry watchers have commended the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) for the hitch-free merger, adding that such should be encouraged. “This initiative is widely applauded as a major telecom industry landmark deal,” one of the analysts said.
With the acquisition deal sealed, MTN is now expected to massively and aggressively leverage the CDMA pedigree of Visafone to roll out premium products that will usher in very good business opportunity for the carrier and Nigerians.
This is expected to ensure a high quality data services and improve mobile broadband experience for subscribers of Visafone and MTN.
The acquisition, they say, is expected to provide the much-needed relief to the booming internet economy by making available quality mobile broadband services through the deployment of state of the art 4G LTE technologies during the year.
With about 150 million mobile subscribers and about 97 million internet users, Nigeria ranks among the fastest growing countries in terms of mobile subscribers and internet penetration. However, majority of the 97 million internet users today are experiencing narrow band internet at 2G/3G speeds which is particularly frustrating.
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