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A great call: Etisalat taking telecom world by storm with latest acquisition plans

Etisalat is now vying to become one of the largest telecom operators in the globe

In September, Etisalat offered to buy a 46% stake in Zain for 1.7 Kuwaiti dinars ($5.56) per share Etisalat Group reported a 6% increase in consolidated net profit for Q3 2020 to 2.4 billion Dirhams ($653 million) The UAE's Etisalat delivers 98.78 Mbps on average, the fastest 4G in the world

It’s not enough Etisalat is the fastest 4G network in the world or the second most valuable brand in the region.

Etisalat is now vying to become one of the largest telecom operators in the globe.

Acquisition plans

Etisalat believes its $10.5 billion (38.5bn Dirhams) offer to buy a controlling stake in Kuwaiti telecommunications operator Zain could be successful in a “number of weeks”, the chairman of the company, Mohammed Omran, said in his first official statement on the deal.

In September, Etisalat offered to buy a 46% stake in Zain for 1.7 Kuwaiti dinars ($5.56) per share in a move that would make the UAE telecom operator one of the largest in the world.

Etisalat’s strong financials 

Etisalat Group reported a 6% increase in consolidated net profit for Q3 2020 to 2.4 billion Dirhams ($653 million), resulting in a net profit margin of 18%.

Etisalat’s consolidated revenues reached 13 billion Dirhams ($3.54 bn) and the consolidated EBITDA amounted to 6.9 billion Dirhams ($1.89 bn), representing an increase of 2% year over.

The company’s aggregate subscriber base reached 149 million, representing a year on year (yoy) increase of 1%. In the UAE, the subscriber base reached to 12.1 million.

Etisalat subscribers can now access 5G fixed networks for the first time from their homes in UAE.

UAE telecom subscribers

The number of UAE telecom subscribers, including mobile phones, landlines, and the Internet, reached 21.8 million by the end of August.

The UAE’s Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) added that the number of mobile phone subscribers in August was 16.685 mn, up 206,000 from 16.479 mn in July.

The TRA confirmed that pre-paid mobile phone subscriptions totaled 13.1 mn, while post-paid mobile phone subscriptions stood at 3.57 mn.

In July, UAE’s biggest telecom operator Etisalat reported 4.6bn Dirhams ($1.25 bn) in consolidated net profits for H1 2020, a 3% yoy increase.

Fastest connectivity on the planet

A combination of over-engineered infrastructure and relatively high data costs means that certain networks in South Korea and the United Arab Emirates are able to offer exceptionally fast 4G speeds.

The UAE’s Etisalat, for instance, delivers 98.78 Mbps on average, the fastest 4G in the world. South Korea’s SK Telecom trails a bit behind but still offers a zippy 89.54 Mbps connection. In contrast, average 4G speeds in the United States hover around 30 Mbps. 

Second most valuable brand

Identifying the most valuable brands in the region, the inaugural BrandZ™ Top 30 Most Valuable Emirati and Saudi Brands 2020 ranking was released by WPP and Kantar. With a combined value of $50 billion, the ranking includes consumer-facing brands from across a range of categories, from food to energy, which reflect the changing lifestyles and attitudes within the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Saudi Arabia.

For this study, over 12,000 consumers were interviewed about 343 brands across 19 categories.

Telecom providers and banks contribute 70% ($35 billion) of the combined brand value of the Top 30. Saudi telecom giant, STC is the most valuable brand, worth $9.7 bn. 

With its focus on customer experience, Etisalat ($5.2 bn) is the second most valuable brand. The telecoms company focuses on how technology enriches people’s lives, communicated through its “Together Matters” tagline and Smiles loyalty scheme

Pre-paid mobile phone subscriptions totaled 13.1 million, while post-paid mobile phone subscriptions stood at 3.58 million at the end of August.