by Erik Abrahamyan
Over the past 8 years (from 2006 through Q1 2014), VimpelCom invested over $350 million in Armenia, Mr. Bobby Leach, Director for Group Communications at Vimpelcom, has told ArmInfo. Mr. Leach says that VimpelCom will keep on investing in the market but he does not specify the amount.
When asked about the Beeline Armenia brand as compared with the other brands in VimpelCom, Leach stresses that Beeline is a quite strong brand and has rather firm positions in all the host countries. As regards Beeline Armenia, he says that he was very much impressed after his visit to one of the Beeline service offices in Armenia. He even says that he has not seen such offices in other host countries.
When asked whether VimpelCom is raising its position on the list of the telecommunication operators around the globe, Mr. Leach replies that VimpelCom is among the top 10 operators (6th position). He emphasizes that VimpelCom does not set itself a goal to become company number one in sales or other parameters. The company seeks to become a leader by its high-quality services. For instance, in Italy, where VimpelCom is represented by the Wind brand, the company is the third operator, however, over the past three years the company has quarterly been pushing aside the competitors. VimpelCom's achievements are the result of the fact that its services meet the subscribers' needs in terms of quality and diversity. Moreover, the company focuses its efforts on constant enhancement of the service quality.
According to VimpelCom's consolidated report for 2013, the total operating revenue exceeded $22.5 bln, capital expenditures amounted to $4.3 bln, EBITDA margin made up 36.6%. In Q1 2014, the total operating revenue amounted to $5 bln, capital expenditures - $736 mln, EBITDA margin - 41.6%. As of late 2013, VimpelCom Group had 220 mln subscribers, with 26% of them in Russia, over 17% - in Pakistan, 13% - in Bangladesh, over 10% - in Italy, about 12% - in Ukraine, 0.3% in Canada, 0.3% in Armenia.
In 2013 the total operating revenue of Beeline Armenia amounted to $145 mln, capital expenditures - $11 mln, EBITDA margin - 39.4%. The operating revenue in mobile services totaled $64 mln, with that in fixed services amounting to $81 mln. In Q1 2014, the operating revenue of Beeline Armenia amounted to $33 mln, capital expenditures - $1 mln, and EBITDA margin - 36.6%. In Q1 2014, the operating revenue in mobile services totaled $14 mln, with that in fixed services amounting to $19 mln. As of late 2013, Beeline Armenia had 694 thsd subscribers. In Q1 2014, the number of the subscribers rose to 699 thsd.
To note, ArmenTel CJSC (Beeline brand) is a member of VimpelCom Group. VimpelCom is one of the world's largest integrated telecommunications services operators providing voice and data services through a range of traditional and broadband mobile and fixed technologies in Russia, Italy, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Armenia, Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Algeria, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Burundi, Zimbabwe, Central African Republic and Canada. VimpelCom's operations around the globe cover territory with a total population of approximately 782 million people. VimpelCom provides services under the "Beeline", "Kyivstar", "Wind", "Infostrada" "Mobilink", "Leo", "banglalink", "Telecel", and "Djezzy" brands.