Viva Bahrain CEO: data to eclipse voice in two years

30 Sep 2014

Viva Bahrain, owned by Saudi Telecom Company (STC), expects mobile data services to account for more than 50% of its revenues within two years, up from 25% of current turnover as it aims to offset a decline in voice and SMS services, the cellco’s CEO Ulaiyan al-Wetaid told Reuters yesterday. ‘Bahrain has a lot of demand for data, we’re moving fast towards that point … Revenues from data have grown significantly,’ the executive added, while noting that Viva’s total revenue in the first half of 2014 increased by 15% year-on-year. According to an STC bond prospectus, Viva Bahrain’s full-year 2013 revenue was SAR1.2 billion (USD320 million), up 21% from the SAR992 million reported in 2012, having shaken up the Bahraini mobile market with its launch as the third operator in 2010. Bahrain’s mobile broadband segment continues to grow fast whilst the fixed broadband market has stagnated, as the country’s Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) reported that at end-March 2014 total mobile broadband users numbered 1.53 million compared to 177,000 fixed broadband (ADSL, fibre and fixed-wireless [WiMAX]), up from 1.14 million mobile/176,000 fixed broadband customers in the Kingdom a year earlier.

Bahrain, stc Bahrain (formerly Viva)