Australia’s third largest telco, AAPT, is to be comprehensively restructured in a bid to make it more profitable, parent Telecom New Zealand said at its AGM this week. Telecom chief executive Theresa Gattung said details of the restructuring of AAPT’s consumer business would be announced in November. ‘There will be a completely new business model based on a different customer proposition at a much lower, simpler cost to operate,’ Gattung was quoted by The Australian as telling shareholders in Wellington.
Telecom bought AAPT in 1999 for about AUD2.3 billion (USD1.77 billion), but in February 2006 it drastically reduced its book value to AUD628 million, following a review of the company’s recent performance and assessment of its future prospects. Gattung defended Telecom’s decision to hang on to AAPT, saying the company needed a presence in Australia to serve its New Zealand customers. ‘Whether we like it or not, New Zealand does tend to be part of a bigger Australasian economy and many New Zealand companies are part of larger Australian organisations,’ she said.