State-owned Zimbabwean ISP PowerTel Communications is struggling to stay afloat according to local press reports. TechZim cites a study by the Auditor General which has found that PowerTel owed USD3.28 million in outstanding licence fees at the end of 2018, while it also has a backlog of customers waiting to be connected, with the ISP holding over USD865,000 of potential subscribers’ money which has been paid up front for installation fees. Further, the Auditor General stated that the telco has negative working capital of more than USD9.7 million.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, PowerTel Communications is a wholly owned subsidiary of Zimbabwe’s state-controlled utility group ZESA Holdings. It owns a 3,000km fibre backbone network, which helps to link Zimbabwe to international submarine cables via gateways in Botswana and Mozambique, while it offers last-mile access using CDMA wireless technology in 16 cities.