Digicel grows customer base during COVID-19
...now operating in Jamaica for 20 yearsWednesday, April 21, 2021
BY KELLARAY MILES
With a growing demand for digital and technological services in the country since the onset of novel coronavirus pandemic last year, Digicel Jamaica Limited is informing that it has added approximately 50,000 new subscribers to its growing list of customers
“There are a lot of things happening around the Internet concerning mobile and fixed broadband, so on that we acquired [a net gain] of about 40,000-50,000 new customers joining the network over the last 12 months,” said newly appointed Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Digicel Jabbor Kayumov while speaking at a virtually held media conference held on Monday to commemorate the company's 20th anniversary. Kayumov said that the increase in numbers for a company which already served approximately two million customers indicates that there has indeed been a heightened demand and need for more and better quality services in the country — one which his company was committed to delivering. He said that to satisfy this growing demand, the company has also been constantly working to improve its infrastructures to effectively provide these services.
“We will definitely be rolling out more sites or towers where we don't have coverage or the signal is a bit weak. I'm also happy to report that in the course of the last 12 months we rolled out about 400 new sites for fixed LTE, especially in rural areas where the connectivity was not sufficient.
“We're continuously investing and over the next 12 months we will continue to invest more US dollars into building the infrastructure to address the demand which is growing quite fast,” he said.
The telecommunications firm, which in 2001 commenced operations in Jamaica under the leadership of Irish businessman Denis O'Brien, now operates in over 30 markets across the Caribbean, Central American and the Pacific region.
The company, in a recent push to better serve its customers during the pandemic and onwards, transitioned to becoming a digital operator — aiming to deliver minute to minute digital experiences or 1,440 minutes each day to customers through an expanded suite of locally developed lifestyle, music, sports, news and messaging apps. Prior to this repositioning, Digicel operated as a mobile operator, providing service to customers through minutes and megabytes.
“What digital operator means is that Digicel will continue to be innovative as it leads the industry here in Jamaica and globally. We're not going to wait on Silicon Valley, so we came up with our own apps. Majority of our customers are about 20 years old and are not anymore about voice calls, we have almost 1.5 million mobile data consumers — most of whom are youngsters and not so much about old fashion Internet but more app and digital things. We [therefore] came up with eight apps which will cover the customers 24/7 digital needs,” Kayumov said referring to the eight apps which included SportsMax, D'music, Loop, GoLoud, PlayGo, Bip, Billo and MyDigicel.
Chairman of Digicel Jamaica Harry Smith, in reiterating the company's commitment to improve service delivery, said that the overall aim was to make the lives of customers better.
“The services offered have now allowed small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to become more efficient in their businesses and the lives of Jamaicans being changed immeasurably as we have made it so easy for everybody to have technology.
“The things that we have done over the last 20 years, no other industry has been able to move at this pace as we are almost in step with the information technology infrastructure. A lot of the things we do now are driven by customers as the brand belongs to the people,” Smith said.
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