Orbitel WiMAX business lagging behind expectations, report

2 Feb 2007

An audit by the city of Medellin’s comptroller’s office has found that Orbitel’s WiMAX offering is falling short of expectations, writes BNamericas. Orbitel, owned by municipally run telco EPM, is the only company in Colombia to have deployed WiMAX services, which it launched in July 2006 in the city of Cali and has since expanded to Bogotá, Medellín, Barranquilla, Cartagena and Cucutá. According to the comptroller, in August 2006 Orbitel had only met 23% of its revenue goals for the WiMAX service and 26% of its subscription goals. Moreover, as of October the company’s service cancellation rate was 24%, considerably higher than the 1% envisaged in its business plan. The watchdog said it would continue to monitor the project. While admitting to the shortcomings, Orbitel plans to continue its rollout schedule which calls for coverage of 30 cities by the end of 2007. The company added that at the end of 2006 it had just over 1,000 WiMAX customers, of which 15-20% are corporate accounts.